Myanmar’s Crisis & the World

US, EU Extend Myanmar Sanctions, Target Aviation Company, Minister, Judge

By The Irrawaddy & AFP 9 November 2022

BRUSSELS—The US and EU on Tuesday extended their sanctions on Myanmar’s junta, targeting a local aviation company, its owner, and 19 other individuals and entities including a minister and a chief justice.

The US State Department said on Tuesday that the Treasury Department is targeting for sanctions Sky Aviator Company Limited and its owner and director, Kyaw Min Oo, pursuant to Executive Order 14014, for operating in the defense sector, saying the US is taking additional actions against those who enable the regime’s violence, particularly its repeated air assaults and killing of civilians in Myanmar.

Sky Aviator is a key supplier of military aircraft parts to the regime’s military. Since the February 2021 coup, the company has received multiple arms shipments from sanctioned entities.

The State Department said Kyaw Min Oo has also facilitated foreign military officers’ visits to Myanmar as well as the import of arms and other military equipment and provided assault helicopter upgrades.

The EU measures against 19 other individuals and entities including a minister and a chief justice were announced by the European Council because of “the continuing escalation of violence and grave human rights violations following the military takeover two years ago”.

It was the fifth package of EU sanctions on the Southeast Asian country, which has been under military rule since 2021, when the military staged a coup against a civilian government led by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, who is now in prison on corruption charges judged spurious by Europe.

Myanmar has been in turmoil under the junta, which faces widespread armed resistance and has responded with a brutal crackdown.

A local rights group says 2,300 people have been killed in the past two years, and the UN children’s agency estimates that 1 million people have been displaced.

The latest sanctions target the Myanmar regime’s minister of investment and foreign economic relations, Kan Zaw, its supreme court chief justice, Htun Htun Oo, and high-ranking military officials.

Also listed were election commission officials and businesspeople representing firms linked to the junta.

In total, 84 individuals and 11 entities in Myanmar now fall under the EU sanctions, which include visa bans and the freezing of assets in the European Union.

Previous sanctions maintained include an embargo on weapons and on equipment that can be used to spy on communications.

“The EU is deeply concerned by the continuing escalation of violence and the evolution towards a protracted conflict which has spread across the country and has regional implications,” the European Council said in a statement.

It added that it would do everything possible to bring to justice those responsible for “human rights violations, war crimes and crimes against humanity” in the wake of the coup.