Myanmar’s NUG needs international stamp of approval

17 April 2023
Myanmar’s NUG needs international stamp of approval
Myanmar State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi. Photo: EPA

Myanmar’s National Unity Government (NUG) needs help to get full recognition on the international stage.

Two years after its founding, the NUG needs the stamp of approval from the United Nations and individual supportive governments as it battles Min Aung Hlaing’s illegal junta.

The horrific Pasigyi massacre last week, in which over 170 civilians were killed by junta fighter aircraft, is yet one more example of the barbaric nature of Min Aung Hlaing’s military regime, arguably a modern-day version of Cambodia’s 1970s Pol Pot government.

As Min Aung Hlaing ramps up his hate of Myanmar citizens, playing games with a promise of a national election to try to place a fig-leaf of democracy over his brutal junta, it is becoming increasingly clear that Western powers need to go the extra mile to recognize and hold dialogue with the Spring Revolution body, the NUG.

The NUG is in essence an attempt to reinstate the duly elected civilian government of Aung San Suu Kyi and the National League for Democracy that won the 2020 election in a clear message from the Myanmar people. The NUG does not represent all opposition voices but it is clearly the main player in the fight. Although The Lady may be behind bars, facing a life sentence, the NUG is the candle of freedom to be nurtured and protected as the people move once and for all to drive the military out of politics.

Ever since General Ne Win’s military coup in 1962, Myanmar has been under the jackboots of the generals, who’ve played games to remain in power – the 2010-2020 interim period now clearly viewed as offering false hope of freedom under the military-written 2008 constitution.

The NUG and the Spring Revolution players are grateful for the support from such countries as the USA, UK and other European countries in the actions taken in the halls of the United Nations and with the sanctions and other diplomatic moves made against the Myanmar junta over the coup and the horrific massacres and brutality.

But, unlike the rush by Western governments to support and fund Ukraine and President Volodymyr Zelensky in the wake of the Russian invasion, the Myanmar opposition is receiving little or no

support in terms of weapons and funding. This willingness to only go so far to help means the Myanmar crisis could drag on for years, even decades, despite the “feel-good” statements of the NUG saying 2023 should be the last year for the Spring Revolution to roll out before victory.

When US President Barack Obama came to Myanmar to hug The Lady sending a message of hope for democracy in the Golden Land, it conveyed an important message that helped to further open up the country. But those hugs mean nothing today as Aung San Suu Kyi remains in solitary confinement – members of her government jailed, murdered, in hiding, or in exile.

The West needs to step up to the plate to offer real support to the NUG to help expedite the Myanmar people’s wish to be free once and for all from the jackboots of their oppressor.