Coup regime orders foreign correspondents to stop calling it a ‘junta’

The coup regime’s information ministry on Wednesday said foreign correspondents in Myanmar would face lawsuits if they continued to refer to the rulers who seized power in February as a junta. 

In a statement published in the military-run Global New Light of Myanmar, the ministry also objected to the use of the term “military council” in news agencies’ coverage.

“It has been clearly announced that the government is not a coup d’etat government,” read the statement, which was also published by other military propaganda outlets. 

It warned foreign outlets against “quoting rootless sources and false news,” adding that “action will be taken against them under the existing laws if they apply wrong usages, quote and exaggerate fake news and disseminate false information.”

The regime refers to itself as the State Administration Council.

Some foreign news agencies were “undermining the country by disseminating false news to global people,” said the announcement, which came over a week after the junta hit out at CNN and Reuters for their coverage of the torching of Kinma village.

The junta has claimed that “armed terrorists” set fire to the Magway Region village, contradicting reports by villagers who said regime forces were responsible.  

Days after Min Aung Hlaing seized power, the new junta warned local publications that they would lose their publishing licenses if they referred to the takeover as a coup. Both local and international outlets ignored the junta’s warnings.

Wednesday’s announcement said the regime controls state duties “in line with the provisions of the state of emergency under the Constitution”.

It also falsely claimed that “the United Nations and global countries have recognized the State Administration Council as the legal government of Myanmar.”

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