The United Nations General Assembly on Friday (18) approved a non-binding resolution condemning the coup in Myanmar and calling on “all member states to block the flow of arms” to the country.
The text also urges the Burmese armed forces to release political prisoners, including the fallen civilian leader in February, Aung San Suu Kyi.
“The risk of full-scale civil war is real,” UN Special Envoy to Myanmar Christine Schraner Burgener said after the vote. “The opportunity to reverse the military coup is running out.”
The text was approved by 119 countries, while 36 others abstained, including China – Myanmar’s main supporter – and Russia.
Only Belarus voted against, which prevented the resolution from being approved by consensus, as its authors had expected, and imposed a public vote, in which the 193 UN countries were forced to reveal their choice.
Of the ten members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) who participated in the negotiation of the text, initiated by Liechtenstein, only four abstained: Brunei (current president of the association) , Cambodia, Laos and Thailand.
Myanmar, represented by Ambassador Kyaw Moe Tun, ousted after the February coup, but still in office, paradoxically voted in favor of the text.
The United Nations General Assembly rarely passes resolutions condemning military coups.
“This is the broadest and most universal condemnation of the situation in Myanmar to date,” said European Union (EU) Ambassador to the UN Olof Skoog.
“The EU is proud of the resolution just adopted by the United Nations General Assembly. It sends a strong and powerful message. It delegitimizes the military junta, condemns the abuses and violence against its own people and shows its isolation in the eyes. of the world, “he added.