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US says ‘military coup’ carried out in Myanmar: State Department officials

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The United States has declared the recent developments in Myanmar as a “coup d’etat,” senior State Department officials announced Tuesday.

“We reject any attempt by the military to alter the outcome,” of the elections at the end of 2020, one State Department official told reporters during a briefing.

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The army seized power after weeks of alleging voter fraud in Myanmar’s elections, which Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy party swept.

After detaining her, the military installed a 12-month state of emergency, and the country’s “legislative, judicial and executive powers” were granted to army chief General Min Aung Hlaing.

Washington has expressed “grave concern,” and after a careful review, the US has assessed that Myanmar’s leader was deposed in a military coup on Feb. 1.

“We continue to call for … their immediate and unconditional release,” the State Department official said in reference to the arrest of Suu Kyi and other civil society members.

Tuesday’s assessment also triggers “certain restrictions” for aid to Myanmar, but the officials said that the US would continue specific programs such as humanitarian assistance and help for the civil society.

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- With Reuters