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Rogue state

  • Published at 12:08 am November 27th, 2019
OPCW
Photo: REUTERS

This latest finding reveals Myanmar’s dishonesty in its international dealings

Once again, it has come to light that Myanmar is breaking the rules of the world community to forward its own interests.

Given that Myanmar is so reluctant to allow foreign observers on to their soil, as we have seen with regards to the Rohingya crisis, the revelation is not a surprise, but is nevertheless disturbing: In breach of the global convention which bans chemical weapons, it has been found the Myanmar has been maintaining a stockpile left over from the 1980s.

Back in 2015, Myanmar had joined the Chemical Weapons Convention, which bans the production and storage of chemical arms, so this latest finding reveals Myanmar’s dishonesty in its international dealings.

These chemical weapons should have been declared, and weapons facilities should have been destroyed a long time ago, but clearly, that has not happened.

So the question is: What exactly was Myanmar planning to do with these weapons? And to what degree have they already been used against people?

According to a report, phosphorus was used against protesters at a copper mine in 2013, and there is evidence that chemical weapons were used against rebels from the Kachin ethnic minority during clashes, both in northern Myanmar.

There is no way to condone these egregious actions; for too long the military in Myanmar abetted by the government has been getting away with flouting the rules, and violating human rights on a large scale.

Indeed, such a deliberate and planned breach of the global convention should be enough to label Myanmar as a rogue state -- and then, the world powers would have no choice but to take swift and decisive action against the regime.