Nay Pyi Taw, March (20)

The military council is seeking foreign earnings from Myanmar Gems Emporium in order to further commit war crimes against the people, said the blood money group.

The 58th Myanmar Gems Emporium will be held from March 17 to 23 in Nay Pyi Taw, and the opening ceremony was attended by the military leader Min Aung Hlaing.

The exhibition has private jewelry showrooms, and jade stones excavated from Metlinchaung joint venture-2 in Lonkhin/Phakant gems land and lots of uncut jade stones are also on display outside the hall, according to the junta propaganda newspaper.

An official from the Blood Money group said, ” The military council is selling the gems to get foreign currency, and the proceeds can be used to terrorize and kill the population. We should actually boycott those revenues. Because the proceeds from the sale of gems can be used by the military council to buy back weapons”.

At this exhibition, more than 290 lots of pearls, 120 lots of gems, and 2150 lots of jade will be sold to international and domestic gem merchants through the open tender system, and terms and conditions, the military council said.

The floor prices of gems are set in US dollars and euros, and foreign merchants can pay in US dollars, euros, yuan, and baht, while local traders must pay in Myanmar kyats, the equivalent of foreign currencies.

According to the official, the Blood Money group is constantly monitoring traders who buy gems and will label them as those who endorse injustice.

Justice For Myanmar warns that jade and gems are a major source of revenue for the military council and their militias, which fund the military’s brutal crimes in ethnic areas.

Justice for Myanmar spokeswoman Daw Yadana Maung told Than Lwin Times that the jade and gem industries bring foreign income to the military council just like the oil and natural gas industries, so special attention needs to be paid to this sector.

According to Justice for Myanmar, the military is profiting from mining operations through their conglomerate, Myanma Economic Holdings Limited (MEHL), which owns most of the private jade and ruby business licenses.

In April 2021, the United States Department of Treasury imposed sanctions on Myanmar’s gem industry, followed by the United Kingdom and the European Union in May and June.

However, Justice for Myanmar claims that Myanmar’s gem industry is currently generating revenue for the military council, which is perpetrating violence against the people, and the United States has blocked the industry, but continues to allow the import of gems.

News-Than Lwin Times

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