Yangon, May (16)

On May 11, the military regime enacted the Arms Act, which can impose a minimum of six months to life imprisonment or the death penalty if anyone is found guilty of illegally carrying a weapon and violates any prohibitions.

This Arms Act was signed by the junta leader General Min Aung Hlaing, and all Arms Acts and Orders in effect from 1878 to 1924 are hereby repealed in accordance with Article 419 of the 2008 Constitution.

The Arms Act is said to have been promulgated to prevent the manufacture, distribution, and importation of illegal weapons and the carrying of arms that may harm national security, law enforcement, and community peace.

The Arms Act prohibits anyone from transporting, possessing, or carrying a weapon with intent to commit treason, and state-owned weapons must not be destroyed with the intention of harming the country.

In addition, it is prohibited to steal, sell, or attempt to transfer to someone else firearms or ammunition owned by the state or a person authorized to possess them by law.

According to a lawyer, “This law is intended to prevent soldiers and police personnel from deserting the army and joining opposition groups”.

The military council said that anyone who violates any of the prohibitions of the law will be sentenced to at least three months in prison, the death penalty, or a fine of at least Ks 100,000 to Ks 500,000, or both.

Colonel Norbu, information officer for the Kachin Independent Organization (KIO), stated, “In the current political environment, it is difficult to control the sale and possession of weapons.”

Many armed organizations in various sections of the country are protesting against the military council, therefore, they will take up arms. I do not believe the military council’s law will be effective. The PDFs are producing weapons in their own way, so they will not stop carrying arms.

Soldiers and police officers who opposed a military dictatorship deserted the army in the early days of the coup and joined the Nonviolent Civil Disobedience Movement (CDM).

The revolutionary forces awarded cash rewards to soldiers who joined the people’s embrace along with weapons and ammunition, and more than 13,000 military and police personnel participated in the CDM, according to data from the National Unity Government (NUG).

According to Nai Nagar, a spokesperson for the Mon State Revolutionary Force (MSRF), “according to this law, anyone who cannot accept the military council or is considered to be against the military coup can be arrested and punished, and the revolutionary forces said they would continue to attack without changing their stance”.

The military council issued a statement last week that the People’s Defense Forces (PDFs) will be offered a cash reward if they enter the legal fold along with ammunition, and will consider leniency even if they have committed crimes.

The People’s Defense Forces responded that they had absolutely no faith in the junta statement and that they would give more than the military council’s reward to those who joined the people’s embrace, along with ammunition.

News – Than Lwin Times

Photo – Clip Art

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