NLD Demands Myanmar Military End ‘Unlawful’ Raids on Its Offices

By The Irrawaddy 3 February 2021

YANGON—The National League for Democracy (NLD) has called on authorities to stop soldiers’ unlawful sealing off of NLD headquarters and township offices in some states and regions following the military’s staging of a coup and detention of national civilian leaders.

The NLD’s Central Executive Committee (CEC) said the military (or Tatmadaw) raided the NLD’s offices across the country including in Mandalay and Magway regions and Mon State on Tuesday and confiscated property including documents and laptops.

The CEC said that the military broke down doors to enter some township offices. It said it objected to the unlawful acts by the Myanmar military.

On Feb. 1, the military staged a coup just hours before the new NLD-dominated Parliament was set to convene, claiming it was forced to act over what it called electoral fraud in the Nov. 8 general election and the civilian government’s failure to address the issue.

Following Monday’s coup, NLD offices across the states and regions were guarded by military officers. As soon as they raided the offices, the soldiers ordered party officials to remove Myanmar State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s portraits and party flags, according to NLD members.

Just a few hours after staging the coup, the military also sealed off the NLD headquarters in Myitkyina, the capital of Kachin State, and removed a party signboard.

Police officers are seen at the NLD’s Maha Aung Myay Township office in Mandalay before they sealed off the office. / Zaw Zaw / The Irrawaddy

U Kyaw Kyaw Oo, a secretary of an NLD township office in Myitkyina, told The Irrawaddy that “The headquarters in Myitkyina is currently filled with soldiers. They destroyed all the door locks, without giving a proper reason.” U Kyaw Kyaw Oo is now on the run as the military also searched his home, he said.

The township offices in Mohnyin, Momauk and Hpakant are sealed off by the military.

U Thaung Htay, the chairman of the NLD in Kayah State, said that the party’s offices in the state have also been closed down by the military, adding that troops arrested members of the Kayah State government and some NLD members.

On Monday, soldiers searched the NLD’s Ayeyarwady Region head office, seized a computer and documents, and sealed off the office, said U Kyaw Htet Aung, the office manager.

On Tuesday, the CEC also called for the immediate release of Union President U Win Myint,  party chairperson-cum-State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and others detained by the Myanmar military.

It said the military’s staging of a coup d’état violated its own Constitution and ignores the sovereignty of the people. It called on the military to acknowledge the election results and to convene the Parliament, as per the Constitution.

Additional reporting by Salai Thantsin

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