EU’s top diplomat condemns Myanmar violence

BRUSSELS: The EU’s foreign policy chief on Saturday (Feb 20) condemned increasingly deadly violence in Myanmar, after two protesters were killed as security forces fired live rounds, and said the bloc will “take appropriate decisions”.

“I strongly condemn the violence against peaceful civilian protestors by the military. I urge the military and all security forces in Myanmar to immediately stop violence against civilians,” Josep Borrell, the EU’s high representative and vice president, tweeted.

He said a meeting in Brussels of EU foreign ministers on Monday “will discuss … the latest events in Myanmar to take appropriate decisions”.

READ: Two dead, several injured in Myanmar after live rounds used to disperse protest, say medical workers

His comments came after security forces in Myanmar’s second city of Mandalay fired live ammunition and rubber bullets at protesters demonstrating against the country’s junta, which deposed civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi in a Feb 1 coup. 

Two people were killed, including a boy shot in the head, emergency workers said.

READ: Singapore says use of lethal force in Myanmar against unarmed protesters ‘inexcusable’ after deaths reported

The European Commission on Friday had already reacted to the death of another protester fatally shot in the head with a live round during a demonstration on Feb 9.

A spokeswoman called for a “transparent” investigation into that death so that “those responsible answer for their acts”.

A senior EU official said the EU ministers’ meeting on Monday was expected to move towards sanctioning Myanmar military officers.