Burma

Striking Myanmar Civil Servants Denied Passports

By The Irrawaddy 18 May 2022

Myanmar’s military regime has stopped issuing passports to striking civil servants to prevent them leaving the country.

A striking doctor said: “Instead of arresting strikers at the airports, the regime has barred them from applying for or extending passports. I made enquiries about an extension and found a list of striking civil servants has been sent to the passport office.”

The regime has issued arrest warrants, detained and sacked striking civil servants as it tries to pressure them back to work.

A striking teacher said: “Once they saw my name, they asked me if I was a teacher. I denied it but they said my name was on a list. They said I will be arrested at the airport if they issue a passport.”

The teacher said she is trying to work abroad because of financial difficulties after being jobless for a year.

“The regime is trying various means to make us regret joining the civil disobedience movement [CDM],” she added.

The regime began stopping strikers from leaving the country in March.

A list of strikers, including their national registration numbers, has been sent to the passport office and some have been detained and questioned, a passport office source told The Irrawaddy.

Strikers have been detained at Yangon International Airport and charged with incitement, according to the media.

Schools are scheduled to reopen next month and the regime is trying to persuade teachers to return to their classrooms.

More than 200,000 civil servants joined the CDM to defy the military rule and many still refuse to work for the regime.

The regime has committed serious human rights violations against its opponents, including revoking their citizenship, sealing off their houses and taking their families, including children, as hostages.

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