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Detained Mon State Gov’t Ministers now released

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The Chief Minister and all Mon State Government Ministers that had been detained by the Tatmadaw since early in the morning of February 1, have now all been released.

While some Ministers were released earlier, the last of the detained group were able to return to their homes in the evening of February 3.

“It’s the last of us three – Dr. Thein Lin, U Shwe Myint and myself – we got released. I was placed [in detention] near the SouthEast Common Headquarters when I was first taken. I was not asked any questions. I did not know what’s happening outside, either,” said Dr. Min Kyi Win, Minister of Natural Resources and Environmental Preservation.

The released Ministers were told they must leave the Government Residence within 3 days.

Mon State’s Chief Minister, Dr. Aye Zan was released on February 2 but has been under house arrest at the Government Residence.

Indicative of a high level of planning, the arrests of the Chief Ministers and government members from all respective states and regions took place at the same time in the early morning of February 1, 2021.

Mon State Government Group having press conference with dated 4/6/2019
Mon State Government Group having press conference with dated 4/6/2019

The arrests were made through the headquarters of the respective military regional commands.

President U Win Myint and State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi were also arrested in Nay Pyi Taw. The Vice President, U Myint Swe was appointed as acting president.

The Tatmadaw cite article 417 of the 2008 constitution, related to unsubstantiated claims of mass voter fraud as the basis for their actions.

A state of emergency was declared on February 1, 2021, and is to be in effect for at least one year.

The authorities for the state legislature, executive and judiciary branches were all transferred to General Min Aung Hlaing.

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