Bipartisan US Legislation Authorizes Genocide Label, Expanded Sanctions Against Myanmar

© REUTERS / OBTAINED BY REUTERSDemonstrators hide behind a barricade during protests against the military coup in Yangon, Myanmar March 28, 2021 in this screen grab taken from a social media video obtained by REUTERS.
Demonstrators hide behind a barricade during protests against the military coup in Yangon, Myanmar March 28, 2021 in this screen grab taken from a social media video obtained by REUTERS. - Sputnik International, 1920, 05.10.2021
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WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - Myanmar officials responsible for the nation’s February military coup could face expanded sanctions, a genocide determination over persecution of the Rohingya minority, and a ban on gem exports under legislation introduced by US House Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Gregory Meeks and other lawmakers.
“By authorizing targeted sanctions against the Burmese [Myanmar] military, the State Administrative Council, as well as their affiliated entities and conglomerates, the bill holds accountable those responsible for the perpetration of the coup and the ensuing atrocities that have claimed over a thousand lives,” a press release explaining the bill said on Tuesday.
The legislation would authorize sanctions individuals and entities who helped stage the February 1 coup d’etat and are responsible for the subsequent repression of fundamental freedoms, human rights abuses, use of indiscriminate violence towards civilians, and other gross atrocities, the release said.
© REUTERS / Stringer .Soldiers stand next to military vehicles as people gather to protest against the military coup, in Yangon, Myanmar, February 15, 2021.
Soldiers stand next to military vehicles as people gather to protest against the military coup, in Yangon, Myanmar, February 15, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 05.10.2021
Soldiers stand next to military vehicles as people gather to protest against the military coup, in Yangon, Myanmar, February 15, 2021.
In addition, the legislation calls on State Department to make a genocide determination over oppression of Rohingya, hundreds of thousands of whom have been forced into exile in neighboring Bangladesh, the release added.
The bill would also allow the US to prohibit imports of gemstones from Myanmar into the United States, according to the release.
In addition to Meeks, the legislation is co-sponsored US House Foreign Affairs Asia-Pacific Subcommittee Ranking Republican Steve Chabot and Senator Benjamin Cardin.
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