Commander-in-chief of Myanmar armed forces general Min Aung Hlaing arrives to pay his respects to country's independence heroes during a ceremony to mark the 71st anniversary of Martyrs' Day in Yangon on July 19, 2018. Myanmar observes the 71st anniversary of Martyrs' Day, marking the assassination of independence heroes including Aung San Suu Kyi's father, who helped end British colonial rule. / AFP PHOTO / Ye Aung THU

YANGON: On Saturday, the Commander-in-Chief of the Tatmadaw (Myanmar’s military) dispelled speculations of a possible coup d’état with his comments to abide by the country’s constitution. The comments come after the commander has made comments regarding the possibility of revoking of the constitution of Myanmar, which was drafted by the military junta in 2008. 

Tensions between the civil-military authorities have been rising since the November elections in Myanmar, which had been won by a landslide by Aung San Suu Kyi’s ruling National League for Democracy (NLD). The army has raised concerns over alleged widespread violation of procedural rules and irregularities. 

On Tuesday, the country’s civil-military relations were further damaged when the spokesperson for the Tatmadaw refused to deny the possibility of a coup. A day later, army chief General Min Aung Hlaing said revoking the 2008 junta-scripted constitution could be “necessary” under certain circumstances. The army chief is the most powerful individual in the country which came out of official military rule in 2010 when the military junta was dissolved and a nominally civilian government was installed after a 49-year military dictatorship. 

On Saturday the army released a statement addressing the speculations of a coup, in the statement, it claimed that its commander-in-chief had been misunderstood. “Some organisations and media defined the speech of the Commander-in-Chief as they liked… without respecting the full text of the speech,” said an English translation of the statement, “the Tatmadaw is abiding by the constitution… (and) will perform its tasks within the frame of enacted law while safeguarding it.” 

Most recently in the statement on Saturday the army chief of the Burmese Army vowed to follow the constitution and denied any possibility of replacing it.


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