Dismissed Myanmar lawmakers announce formation of ‘unity government’

A committee of Myanmar’s dismissed lawmakers announced the formation of a new “unity government” which includes removed lawmakers, members of ethnic groups and figures in the anti-coup protest, saying their aim was to root out military rule.

The announcement was made on Friday by Dr Sasa, who has been designated by the dismissed parliament as representative to the United Nations.

“For the first time in our history, Myanmar has a unity government,” he declared on social media, posting the document showing Win Myint as president and Aung San Suu Kyi as state counsellor.

Myanmar’s acting Vice President Mahn Win Khaing Than was appointed interim prime minister. Dr Sasa himself has been designated as the union minister in international cooperation.

The latest development comes as thousands of people staged different forms of protests nationwide in Yangon to protest marches in Mandalay and elsewhere, against the February 1 coup and denouncing the violent crackdown that killed more than 700 people.

Friday is the third day of the five-day traditional Buddhist New Year holiday, known as Thingyan.

Most people this year are shunning the usual festivities to focus on their campaign against the generals who overthrew Aung San Suu Kyi’s government and locked up with many others.

The military has also been rounding up its critics and has published the names of more than 200 people wanted under a law that makes it illegal to encourage mutiny or dereliction of duty in the armed forces.

Late on Thursday, soldiers raided a famous Buddhist monastery in Mandalay and arrested two people, the Myanmar Now media group reported. Two people were shot dead in the central town of Myingyan in violence overnight, Radio Free Asia reported.