Support 100 years of independent journalism.

  1. Podcasts
  2. World Review
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.

Sign up for The New Statesman’s newsletters Tick the boxes of the newsletters you would like to receive. Quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics from the New Statesman's politics team. The New Statesman’s global affairs newsletter, every Monday and Friday. The best of the New Statesman, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning. The New Statesman’s weekly environment email on the politics, business and culture of the climate and nature crises - in your inbox every Thursday. A handy, three-minute glance at the week ahead in companies, markets, regulation and investment, landing in your inbox every Monday morning. Our weekly culture newsletter – from books and art to pop culture and memes – sent every Friday. A weekly round-up of some of the best articles featured in the most recent issue of the New Statesman, sent each Saturday. A newsletter showcasing the finest writing from the ideas section and the NS archive, covering political ideas, philosophy, criticism and intellectual history - sent every Wednesday. Sign up to receive information regarding NS events, subscription offers & product updates.

How to listen to the World Review podcast

1. In your browser

You can use the player above to listen in your browser right now. The World Review podcast publishes weekly, on Fridays. All episodes are published to on the day of release.

2. In a podcast app

World Review is available on all major podcast apps including Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Acast, Google Podcasts, and more. Search ‘World Review’ in your favourite podcast app, and subscribe or follow to make sure you receive episodes as soon as they publish. While you’re there, please leave a review for the podcast – it helps others find the show, which in turn makes it possible for us to keep making it.

Content from our partners
How do we secure the hybrid office?
How materials innovation can help achieve net zero and level-up the UK
Fantastic mental well-being strategies and where to find them

3. On your smart speaker

If you have an Amazon Echo, Google Home or Apple HomePod smart speaker, ask it to “play the latest episode of World Review”. The same command also works with virtual assistants on mobile devices.

Topics in this article: