Myanmar Junta Generals Retire to Take Top Roles in Proxy Party

By The Irrawaddy 31 October 2022

Two Myanmar junta generals have recently stepped down to take senior positions in the military-proxy Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP).

Lieutenant General Myo Zaw Thein was selected as vice-chair and Lieutenant General Aung Soe was appointed head of the party’s external relations committee on Friday, according to U Maung Myint, a central executive committee (CEC) member.

“The military and party are not strangers to each other. They have just arrived but they will quickly grow accustomed to the party. There is no problem,” he said.

CEC member U Thaung Aye was elected as party general, another key position, said U Maung Myint.

U Thaung Aye ran for the Lower House in Pyawbwe Township in the 2020 general election but lost to the National League for Democracy (NLD) candidate, Dr. Win Maung.

He took a lead role in alleging voter fraud and sent supposed proof of voter-list errors to the military. He served in the Lower House from 2010 to 2020 after retiring as a lieutenant general.

He was nominated as Lower House speaker under the NLD government but lost to T Khun Myat.

U Thaung Aye served as the chief minister in Shan and Rakhine states under the previous junta, the State Peace and Development Council.

Myo Zaw Thein was the military’s adjutant general, Yangon commander and commanded the Bureau of Special Operations 5.

Aung Soe was deputy home affairs minister and served as chief of the Bureau of Special Operations 4 and commanded operations in Karen State after the 2021 coup.