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Myanmar ambassador says he is locked out of London embassy in ‘coup’



Ambassador Kyaw Zwar Minn – who last month broke up with his country’s military junta – told CNN that he tried to gain access to the embassy on Wednesday for several hours but could not get in.

Several of his employees were still inside the building and were not allowed to get out, he also said.

Phone calls to the embassy went unanswered and emails jumped back.

Myanmar’s military seized power in the country on February 1, ousting the elected government of civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi. Non-violent protests against the coup have since erupted across the country, and several Myanmar diplomats deployed abroad have also made statements of resistance.

Kyaw Zwar Minn, the British ambassador, issued a statement last month calling for Suu Kyi̵

7;s release from detention and promising to keep the embassy open following a call with British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab.

At the time, Raab said in a tweet that he was speaking to the ambassador and “praised his courage and patriotism in standing up for what is right.”

The military responded by remembering him. “When he did not behave in accordance with given responsibility, an order [is issued] to summon and transfer him back to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, ”MRTV reported.

A Facebook livestream on Wednesday showed several people showing their support for Myanmar’s British ambassador and expressing confusion with today’s events.

About 50 people also gathered outside the embassy building in Mayfair, an exclusive part of central London.

There is a battle for Myanmar's seat in the United Nations

Officers from London’s Metropolitan Police were also on the ground, warning people to spread as they were in breach of coronavirus restrictions.

Most gathered since dispersing as the evening went on, but CNN has seen at least four police buses filled with officers park near Myanmar’s embassy.

London Metropolitan Police told CNN in a statement: “We are aware of a protest outside the Myanmar embassy in Mayfair, London. Public order officers are present. There have been no arrests.”

In a statement to CNN, the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office said it was “seeking further information following an incident at the Myanmar embassy in London”.

Myanmar’s military leaders tried in vain to remove another diplomat in March after UN Ambassador Kyaw Moe Tun called on members of the international community to use “the necessary means” to restore the country’s civilian leadership.

However, he refused to resign, a decision that has been backed by the UN.

Myanmar military spokesman Major General Zaw Min Tun has said the junta plans to hold new elections after a one-year state of emergency.

Helen Regan contributed to this report.


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