Russia says sanctions could push Myanmar into ‘large-scale civil conflict’

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia said on Tuesday that sanctions against Myanmar authorities were futile, extremely dangerous and could ultimately lead the country into civil war, the Interfax news agency reported.

Myanmar has been rocked by protests since the army toppled the elected government of Aung San Suu Kyi on February 1, making unsubstantiated claims of fraud in the November elections.

The coup and subsequent crackdown have led to Western sanctions on the military and its lucrative businesses.

“A course towards threats and pressure, including the use of sanctioning tools against the current Myanmar authorities, is futile and extremely dangerous,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

“In fact, such a line contributes to pit the parties against each other and ultimately pushes the people of Myanmar into large-scale civil conflict.”

The Kremlin has expressed concern about the rising number of civilian deaths in Myanmar. At least 564 people have been killed by security forces since the coup brought the military junta to power.

However, Russia’s deputy defense minister last month met with the board’s senior general, Min Aung Hlaing, in the capital, Naypyitaw, drawing strong criticism from rights activists who accused Moscow of legitimizing the board. .

(Reporting by Alexander Marrow; Edited by Angus MacSwan)

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