Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Myanmar ambassador says he's locked out of London embassy in 'coup'

  • Apr 08, 2021
  • Author: QT-Online
  • Number of views: 836
  • Top News
Myanmar's ambassador to the UK said he has been locked out of the London embassy in what he described as another "coup," blaming the country's military.
Ambassador Kyaw Zwar Minn -- who last month broke ranks with his country's military junta -- told CNN he tried to gain access to the embassy on Wednesday for several hours but was unable to enter. Several of his staff were still inside the building, and were not being allowed out, he said.
Another source said that Myanmar's military attaché in London had taken control of the building. They added that a group of at least seven people are inside, of which one is a child.
CNN has reached out to the Myanmar military for comment. Phone calls made to the embassy went unanswered and emails bounced back.
Myanmar's military seized power in the country on February 1, deposing civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi's elected government. Non-violent protests against the coup have since broken out across the country, and several Myanmar diplomats posted abroad have also made statements of resistance.
Kyaw Zwar Minn, the UK ambassador, issued a statement last month calling for Suu Kyi's release from detention and pledged to keep the embassy open, following a call with UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab.
At the time, Raab said in a tweet that he spoke to the ambassador and "praised his courage and patriotism in standing up for what is right."
The military responded by recalling him. "Since he did not conduct himself in accordance with given responsibilities, an order [is issued] to summon and transfer him back to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs," MRTV reported.
The source said embassy staffers were all caught by surprise, but that they had anticipated something could happen after the military coup in Myanmar and the ambassador's statement of defiance toward the junta.
A Facebook live stream on Wednesday showed several people showing their support for Myanmar's UK ambassador and expressing confusion with the events of the day.
Around 50 people also gathered outside the embassy building in Mayfair, an exclusive part of central London.