Myanmar’s fragile democracy | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, February 02, 2021 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:49 AM, February 02, 2021

Myanmar’s fragile democracy

The people of Myanmar are no strangers to military rule. Here is a timeline of it's troubled history:

1947: Aung San, who fought against the Japanese and led the country to independence from Britain, is assassinated. Aung San Suu Kyi, is his only daughter and youngest child.

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1948: Myanmar achieves formal independence under President U Nu.

1962: The military under General Ne Win takes power in a coup. All opposition parties are banned.

1988: Pro-democracy protests in August are met with a brutal military crackdown and as many as 5,000 people are killed. In September, Suu Kyi founds the National League for Democracy (NLD).

1990: Under international pressure the military calls an election, which the NLD wins by a landslide. The military refuses to recognise the results or hand over power and Suu Kyi is arrested and placed in house arrest.

1995: In July, Aung San Suu Kyi released from house arrest.

2002: Suu Kyi released again and allowed to travel around the country.

2007: Thousands take to the streets of Yangon in protests led by Buddhist monks, after the military government removes fuel subsidies. Dozens are killed in the subsequent military crackdown.

2008: The process of democratisation begins with a controversial constitutional referendum that took place only two days after Cyclone Nargis swept across the Irrawaddy Delta leaving tens of thousands dead.

2010: The USDP wins elections that are boycotted by the NLD. Aung San Suu Kyi is freed from house arrest in November.

2015: The NLD wins a general election by a landslide and Suu Kyi becomes leader in a specially created role of state counsellor.

2016-18: Unrest flares again in Rakhine after Rohingya fighters attack three police border posts, killing nine police officers. A brutal military crackdown in Rakhine drives more than 730,000 Rohingya into Bangladesh. The United Nations says the campaign of mass killing, rape, and arson was carried out with "genocidal intent", which Myanmar denies. Suu Kyi later defends Myanmar against genocide charges brought at the Hague.

2019: Fighting begins in Rakhine between government troops and the Arakan Army (AA), an ethnic Rakhine group seeking greater regional autonomy. Suu Kyi urges the army to "crush" the rebels.

2020: The NLD claims a resounding victory in parliamentary elections taking more votes than it did in 2015. The USDP demands a rerun of the election and calls for military help to ensure fairness, alleging irregularities.

2021: The military imposes a state of emergency and says power has been transferred to military chief Min Aung Hlaing, after Suu Kyi and other senior government officials were arrested in a series of early morning raids.

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