On January 31, 2022, on the one-year anniversary of the military coup d’état of Burma’s democratically elected civilian government, the US, UK and Canada each designated two Burmese government officials, Union Attorney General Dr. Thida Oo and Chairman of the Anti-Corruption Commission Tin Oo, whose departments are reportedly responsible for filing spurious charges against several of Burma’s pro-democracy leaders in an effort to remove them from office. The joint sanctions were issued to demonstrate the US, UK and Canada’s continued support for the Burmese people and their pursuit of freedom and democracy, and to target those responsible for the coup and the ongoing violence in Burma.
On January 31, 2022, the US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control announced the designations of seven individuals and two entities with connections to Burma’s military regime made pursuant to Executive Order 14014, “Blocking Property with Respect to the Situation in Burma.” As a result of these designations, all property and interests in property of today’s designees within the United States or within the possession or control of a US person are blocked, and US persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions involving the designated persons. On January 26, 2022, the US government also issued a business advisory on the heightened risks of doing business in Burma.
On the same day, the UK HM Treasury’s Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation designated three Burmese government officials pursuant to the Myanmar (Sanctions) Regulations 2021 (SI 2021/496) made under the Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act 2018, which targets persons who undermine democracy and the rule of law and threatens the peace, stability or security of Myanmar. The designees are subject to asset freezes as a result of these sanctions.
Global Affairs Canada also announced additional Myanmar sanctions on January 31, 2022 to impose asset freezes upon three Burmese officials pursuant to the Special Economic Measures (Burma) Regulations.