Human Rights & Public Liberties

Human Rights & Public Liberties

Published on: 13 Jan, 2021

Facebook shuts down Myanmar military’s page

Published on: 21 February, 2021

On Sunday Facebook deleted the main Facebook page of the Myanmar military. Facebook said it made this move after the military breached its standards prohibiting the incitement of violence. The move came as thousands of civilians gathered for protests in Myanmar.

Facebook is one of the most popular forms of communication in Myanmar.

Demonstrators are continuing their protests in cities such as Yangon and Mandalay, undeterred by the death of two people in Mandalay on Saturday when police and soldiers shot at protests.

The Facebook ban occurred amidst an internet blockout in the country and after Facebook has ordered internet service providers to block access to Facebook. The internet was blocked for a seventh night in a row on Saturday.

Speaking to Al Jazeera, the London-based Rohingya activist and president of the Burma Rohingya organisation UK Tun Khin commented: ‘It is good that the Facebook page was taken down but this is not enough. During the Rohingya crisis the military incited hatred through Facebook. Facebook should not help Myanmar military criminals’.

Khin said: ‘Facebook needs to take more pages down. It needs to also take down the Facebook pages of military companies as well as military related companies. Facebook should not assist the military in benefiting from hateful speech.’

On Saturday an activist group, the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners stated that 569 people had been arrested or charged in connection with the coup in Myanmar.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has condemned the deadly violence. He said in a Twitter post: ‘ The use of lethal force, intimidation and harassment against peaceful demonstrators are unacceptable.’