U.S. slaps sanctions on Myanmar in response to military coup

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States on Thursday imposed sanctions on Myanmar’s acting president and several other military officers and warned of more sanctions to come as Washington seeks to punish those it deems responsible for the military coup in Myanmar.

The move blacklisted those who played a “leading role in the overthrow of Burma’s democratically elected government,” the Treasury Department said in a statement, targeting eight individuals, including the defense and home affairs ministers, three companies in the jade and gems sector and updating sanctions on the top two military officials.

The move comes after President Joe Biden approved an executive order for new sanctions on those responsible for the Feb. 1 military coup that ousted the elected government of veteran democracy campaigner, Aung San Suu Kyi.

“The February 1 coup was a direct assault on Burma’s transition to democracy and the rule of law,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in the statement.

“We are also prepared to take additional action should Burma’s military not change course. If there is more violence against peaceful protestors, the Burmese military will find that today’s sanctions are just the first,” Yellen added.

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