The chief of Myanmar's junta on Monday vowed to crush anti-military resistance forces as it held an annual military parade in the administrative capital of Naypyitaw.
Speaking in front of more than 8,000 troops gathered for the 78th Armed Forces Day, Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing said the military is trying to achieve "full law enforcement and tranquility" across the country and promised decisive action against the anti-military "terrorist" groups to that end.
He also called for measures to be taken against the People's Defense Force, the armed wing of the parallel National Unity Government, founded by former ruling party members and ethnic minority groups.
The leader said the military government has put forward a plan to transfer power back to a civilian administration with democratic standards by holding elections but that "serenity and stability" are necessary preconditions for implementing it.
During the procession, tanks, rockets and long-range missiles were displayed, as well as thousands of marching troops and modern fighter jets flying in formation.
Min Aung Hlaing seized power on Feb. 1, 2021, overthrowing an elected civilian government led by Aung San Suu Kyi and alleging that the November 2020 election that gave her National League for Democracy a landslide victory was fraudulent. Election observers, however, have said the vote was fair.
The brutal repression conducted by the military on initially peaceful protesters in the weeks and months after the coup has led to armed resistance among pro-democracy anti-coup factions, resulting in conflict and fighting across the country.
Armed Forces Day in Myanmar marks the day in 1945 when Gen. Aung San, the father of the ousted and detained civilian leader Suu Kyi, led the resistance movement against the Japanese occupying forces during World War II.
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