US announces sanctions against Myanmar’s military leaders

US President Joe Biden on Wednesday announced sanctions against military leaders in Myanmar.

Biden said his administration was taking steps to prevent Myanmar’s generals from having access to $1 billion of government funds held in the US, the Xinhua news agency reported.

The US would identify the first round of sanctions targets this week and impose export controls, Biden said.

He also called on the Myanmar military to immediately release detainees, including President U Win Myint and State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi.

A one-year state of emergency was declared in Myanmar after U Win Myint and Aung San Suu Kyi were detained by the military on February 1.

The military had demanded the postponement of new parliamentary sessions, alleging massive voting fraud in the November 2020 general elections, which saw the National League for Democracy win a majority of seats in both houses of Parliament. Myanmar’s Union Election Commission dismissed the allegation.