For Immediate Release
February 1st, 2024
Campaign for a New Myanmar applauds U.S. Reps. Bill Huizenga (R, MI-4) and Betty McCollum (D, MN-4) for their leadership in forming the first bipartisan Congressional Burma Caucus.
Coming on the third anniversary of the Myanmar military coup, this new caucus is very timely. We urgently need leadership by the US Congress to ensure that the US Administration steps up to support the Burmese people in their struggle to restore civilian rule.
For the past thirty years, it is bipartisan pressure from Congress that has spurred the Administration to act. By strengthening existing legislation and providing effective oversight of the Administration in consultation with the genuine and true representatives of the people of Myanmar, this new caucus will help advance the long-standing goals of the United States to promote democracy, human rights, and stability in the Indo-Pacific region. The caucus will also support the people of Myanmar in establishing a federal and democratic union based on equality, justice, and freedom for all ethnic groups.
We look forward to working with the caucus to build Congressional support for US sanctions that deprive the junta of the revenues, weapons, and aviation fuel it needs to stay in power. We also expect the caucus to help secure US support and funding of non-lethal assistance to Burmese pro-democracy groups, ethnic resistance organizations, and Burmese non-governmental and civil society organizations by implementing the provisions of the bipartisan Burma Act.
In this regard, we encourage the caucus to help press the Administration to form an advisory group regarding the disposition of the approximately $1 billion in Myanmar government funds currently frozen in US banks since the military coup. We also look forward to the support of the caucus for US programs to resettle in the US or other countries Burmese refugees at risk. To carry these out effectively and in a coordinated manner with like-minded regional partners, we will work closely with the caucus to urge the Biden Administration to immediately appoint a dedicated Special Envoy for Burma.
For decades, US leadership has been critical in mobilizing the international community. The Campaign for a New Myanmar looks forward to working with the new Congressional Burma Caucus to help ensure even stronger US support for the Burmese people’s movement for democracy and human rights.