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19 February 2021

Will democracy be restored in Myanmar?

Emily Tamkin and Ido Vock are joined by Wai Hnin Pwint Thon to discuss the unrest in Myanmar following the military coup.

Large-scale protests have been taking place in Myanmar since a military coup on 1 February deposed the democratically elected leader, Aung San Suu Kyi. This week, the UN special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar reported that the military were being deployed to the city of Yangon, raising fears of bloodshed. Protesters are calling for the release of Aung San Suu Kyi and other political prisoners, but activist groups have raised concerns that even that may not be enough to restore democracy in Myanmar.

On this episode of World Review from the New Statesman, Emily Tamkin in Washington, DC and Ido Vock in Berlin are joined by Wai Hnin Pwint Thon, an activist for Burma Campaign UK whose father was one of those arrested in the days after the military coup. They discuss why the army has taken power, what this means for Myanmar and whether there is a road to true democracy for the country.

Further reading

Francis Wade has also been following the situation in Myanmar and has written this piece exploring how democracy might be defined after the military coup.

Emily has been reporting on the Texas storms that have caused power outages, leaving millions in freezing conditions without heating or hot water. She writes that the storms offer a warning to ill-prepared governments.

Ido discusses how new variants of Covid-19 could continue to limit international travel for years beyond the immediate crisis.

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