The United Nations Security Council has expressed deep concern over increased violence across Myanmar, calling for an immediate end to fighting and for the military to exercise “utmost restraint”.
The rare statement, issued on Wednesday, was agreed to by all 15 members.
It came amid reports of a buildup of heavy weapons and troops in western Chin state, suggesting an imminent army attack to flush out militia groups formed after the military ousted Aung San Suu Kyi’s elected government in a coup on February 1.
“The Members of the Security Council expressed deep concern at further recent violence across Myanmar. They called for an immediate cessation of violence and to ensure the safety of civilians,” the statement said.
Myanmar’s military has made no comment on the situation in Chin, a volatile border region that has become a forefront of resistance against military rule.
The southeast Asian country has been paralysed by protests and violence since the coup, with the military struggling to govern and facing armed resistance from militia and ethnic minority rebels allied with a shadow government that it calls “terrorists”.
“The Members of the Security Council … reiterated their deep concern at developments in Myanmar following the declaration of the state of emergency imposed on 1 February and their call on the military to exercise utmost restraint,” said the statement, drafted by the United Kingdom.
“They encouraged the pursuance of dialogue and reconciliation in accordance with the will and interests of the people of Myanmar,” the statement said.
The council also called for full, safe and unhindered humanitarian access to all people in need and the protection, safety and security of humanitarian and medical personnel.