Martial Law Imposed on 37 Myanmar Townships, Including Resistance Strongholds

By The Irrawaddy 3 February 2023

Myanmar’s military government has imposed martial law in 37 townships across the country, including in the resistance strongholds of Sagaing and Magwe regions.

Martial law came a day after the regime extended emergency rule for six more months, two years since the coup on February 1, 2021, signaling more oppression.

Junta chief Min Aung Hlaing told the National Defense and Security Council on Wednesday that security needed to be tightened in 65 of the country’s 330 townships to restore the rule of law.

Martial law sees 37 townships in eight regions and states being put under the direct control of regional commanders.

Among them are 11 townships in Sagaing, five each in Magwe and Bago, two in Tanintharyi, seven in Chin, four in Kayah, two in Karen and one in Mon, according to the junta statement.

Military courts will hear any criminal cases deemed critical of the regime. The junta warned that the death penalty and life sentences would be handed down.

No appeals for verdicts will be allowed in those cases, except for the death sentence, in which case, appeals can be submitted to Min Aung Hlaing for a final decision.

The regime declared martial law in parts of Yangon, Mandalay and Chin State in 2021. Nearly 100 people have been given death sentences in those townships.