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US Sanctions Myanmar Military Leaders Involved in Coup

FILE - This June 6, 2019, photo shows the U.S. Treasury Department building at dusk in Washington.

The United States on Thursday announced new sanctions against Myanmar, also known as Burma, more than a week after the country’s military overthrew the democratically elected government.

The U.S. Treasury said it had sanctioned 10 individuals and three organizations “who played a leading role in the overthrow of Burma’s democratically elected government.”

“The sanctions are not directed at the people of Burma,” the Treasury statement said.

The sanctions were pursuant to an executive order President Joe Biden signed earlier in the day.

The Myanmar military's overthrow of the government has led to five days of widespread street protests.

“As protests grow, violence against those asserting their democratic rights is unacceptable, and we're going to keep calling it out,” Biden said Wednesday. “The people of Burma are making their voices heard.”

The United Nations and other organizations have expressed concern about the use of force against protesters. Major rights groups have renewed calls for international corporations to break ties with military-linked enterprises and have urged governments to impose targeted sanctions on the generals and their business interests.

Military leaders have placed democratic leader Aung San Suu Kyi, other officials of the civilian government and the National League for Democracy party (NLD), and activists under arrest. Curfews have been enforced and gatherings restricted.

The coup reversed a nearly decadelong move toward democracy after five decades of military rule. The military claims the November election won by Suu Kyi’s NLD was fraudulent.