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  • Myanmar Now

Japan’s government should stop training Myanmar’s military

Japan was one of the first governments to issue a statement after the Myanmar military staged a coup on February 1 last year.

Within hours of events unfolding in Naypyitaw, the Japanese leadership expressed “grave concern” and called for the release of those detained by security forces, including President Win Myint and State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi.

Following its swift condemnation, the Japanese government took further action by halting new non-humanitarian development projects, while allowing existing aid projects to continue.

Then on March 28, Japan’s defence ministry issued a joint statement with 11 allies criticising the military’s use of force against “unarmed civilians.” Japan even voted in favour of a Myanmar resolution at the United Nations General Assembly in June, a major shift from its repeated abstentions since 2017.

All this begs the question: why does the Japanese government continue to train the Myanmar military? The Tatmadaw, along with other Myanmar security forces, has since the coupkilled more than 1,400 people, detained over 10,000, and intensified abusive military operations in ethnic minority areas.

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