Myanmar's UK envoy says military attaché "occupied" embassy

08.04.2021

Myanmar's ambassador to Britain accused a Yangon military-linked figure of occupying the embassy on Wednesday and barring him access, in an extraordinary diplomatic stand-off a month after the envoy called for the junta to release ousted civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

Protesters gathered outside the building in London's Mayfair neighbourhood with the ambassador, Kyaw Zwar Minn, as reports emerged he had been locked out. When asked who was inside, he replied: "defence attaché, they occupy my embassy."

The ambassador said that he would stay outside the embassy "all night", explaining "this is my building".

Myanmar has been in turmoil since the army deposed civilian leader Suu Kyi on 1 February, with nearly 600 people killed in a crackdown on anti-coup protests that has ignited international outrage and pleas for restraint.

The junta recalled the ambassador last month after he issued a statement urging them to release Suu Kyi and President Win Myint.

"Diplomacy is the only response and answer to the current impasse," Kyaw Zwar Minn said in the statement that was tweeted by British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab.

Britain's Foreign Office, which has been a strong critic of the coup, said it was "seeking further information following an incident at Myanmar's embassy in London", and the Metropolitan Police said they were aware of the situation.

Kyaw Zwar Minn told the Daily Telegraph that "when I left the embassy, they stormed inside the embassy and took it.”

"They said they received instruction from the capital, so they are not going to let me in," he added, calling on the British government to intervene. (AFP)

More on this topic