Protesters in Myanmar demonstrated outside properties of companies involved in an international gas pipeline operation Thursday, as transparency campaigners appealed to foreign companies involved in extractive industries to stop paying revenue to the new military government.

 

Written By Associated Press Television News

Protesters in Myanmar demonstrated outside properties of companies involved in an international gas pipeline operation Thursday, as transparency campaigners appealed to foreign companies involved in extractive industries to stop paying revenue to the new military government.

In a statement, the Myanmar Alliance for Transparency and Accountability (MATA) said any payments made “would undermine the Myanmar people’s efforts to return the country to democracy.”

It said they would instead “provide the Myanmar military the necessary resources to continue their violations of human rights in Myanmar.”

Thursday’s protest backed up that call. About 200 people gathered near Kanbauk, in Myanmar’s south, outside the operations centres of major international companies, involved in pumping gas from offshore fields and on for export.

They moved between the premises of Total of France, PTTEP of Thailand and Petronas of Malaysia. They carried banners including “Your money is O2 for the military!” and “Stop working with Myanmar military!”

Extractive industries, such as gas, oil and the mining of jade, are a key source of foreign revenue for Myanmar.

MATA said that following the February 1 coup, all international companies involved in such operations should put revenue payments into protected accounts that would only be released to the democratically elected government.

It also appealed to companies involved in the exploration phase to suspend activities until the junta stepped down.

(Image Credit: AP)

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