Myanmar says alleged plot against U.N. envoy was nothing to do with the country
(Reuters) – Myanmar’s foreign ministry said on Monday that an alleged plot in New York against United Nations ambassador Kyaw Moe Tun, an opponent of the ruling junta, had nothing to do with the country and was a U.S. domestic case.
It was the military government’s first statement since the arrest of two Myanmar citizens in connection with the alleged plot. It rejected comments made in condemnation by the U.S. ambassador to the UN, Linda Thomas-Greenfield.
“The event is a domestic case in the United States. Judgment must be made in the United States according to U.S. law. It has nothing to do with Myanmar,” said the statement, read on state television MRTV.
Reuters was unable to reach a junta spokesman for further reaction to the alleged plot.
Two Myanmar citizens have been arrested in New York state for plotting with an arms dealer in Thailand – who sells weapons to the Burmese military – to kill or injure Myanmar’s U.N. ambassador, U.S. authorities said on Friday.
On Saturday, Thomas-Greenfield said the plot fitted a “disturbing pattern” of authoritarian leaders and their supporters seeking to persecute opponents around the world. She said the United States stood in solidarity with Kyaw Moe Tun and commended him for “remarkable courage and bravery”.
“Myanmar strongly rejects the statement of U.S. permanent Representative to the U.N. Linda Thomas Greenfield,” the foreign ministry said.
It added that Kyaw Moe Tun had been dismissed from his post as Myanmar’s U.N. ambassador and currently faced an arrest warrant for treason because he had voiced support for an underground National Unity Government.
Despite the junta’s protests, Kyaw Moe Tun has continued to serve at the United Nations, representing the elected civilian government which was overthrown by the military in February.
Reporting by Reuters staff; Editing by Matthew Tostevin and Giles Elgood