Interview with Dr Sai Kyi Zin Soe, political analyst

The junta’s Ministry of Defense issued an order on 31 January that allows civilians and civil service staff to carry firearms and/or immunition. Under this law, people can apply for owning guns.

This interview with Dr Sai Kyi Zin Soe, the political analyst, focuses on the intention of this order, possible bad consequences and comparison of its policy with foreign countries.

TLT: What is your view on the junta’s policy to allow civilians for carrying firearms?

Dr Sai Kyi Zin Soe: While armed conflict is intensifying in the country, it can be distinguished between the military and resistance forces. Dangerous situation can easily be identified. However, the recent order of arming civilians has raised doubt each other among our community. The civil service staff are not willing to involve in the armed conflicts. They are not well-trained. Therefore, more clashes and crimes are likely to occur in the community.

TLT: What are the intentions of junta for this order?

Dr Sai Kyi Zin Soe: It is generally concluded that the junta cannot properly control the country. They also declared martial law in some areas. However, they cannot guarantee security for their pro-junta groups in other areas. So, the military allowed their loyal civilians for carrying firearms. Arming pro-junta groups is likely to create conflicts deliberately between people and resistance forces, turning the direction from them.

TLT: Can you explain its policy in foreign countries and bad consequences?

Dr Sai Kyi Zin Soe: The United States Constitution guarantees its people the right to ‘keep and bear arms’. They have the gun rights. However, this law cannot prevent school shootings and racial hatred crimes. So, their lawmakers are arguing to review this policy. Such incidents are happening in other countries with civilian gun rights. However, it is more difficult to annul this law, than to issue it due to further complication and controversies. Systematic preparations are needed to allow keeping firearms and/or ammunition. Permits for firearms trade and registration should be fee from corruption. Otherwise, easy access to firearms could lead to many problems in the aggressive community.

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