BANGKOK — One of Myanmar’s most popular celebrities lashed out at the military takeover in his country on Tuesday.
Paing Takhon, 24, a celebrity model who enjoys large followings in both Thailand and Myanmar, joins a growing chorus of condemnation against the coup by Myanmar’s military, which threatens to roll back a decade of democratic reforms in the country.
“We strongly condemn Military coup. We demand immediate release of state counseller [sic] Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, President U Win Myint, civilian government ministers and elected members of perliment [sic],” Paing wrote online Tuesday.
“We demand to respect 2020 election results and form new civillian [sic] government soonest by NLD led perliment [sic].”
“We as a citizen of Myanmar not agree with the current move and would like to request the world leaders. UN and the world medias help our country- our leaders- our people – from this bitter acts. We want democracy and want our country to develop as our nabouring [sic] countries,” he wrote on his Instagram post Monday.
Suu Kyi is believed to be under military custody along with other key members of the opposition movement, following the de facto coup by the Burmese armed forces on Monday morning.
Under Myanmar’s military-backed constitution, the president can hand power to the armed forces in cases of emergency. That is one of many ways the Tatmadaw is assured of keeping ultimate control of the country.
The military claims there has been widespread fraud in November elections, in which Suu Kyi’s allies won more than 80 percent of the seats, but the civilian election regulators have dismissed the allegations.
“We, Myanmar citizens need the world to know what’s happening in Myanmar right now before our wifis are cut off,” Paing posted Monday afternoon. “Again in 2021! History is about to be repeated like in 1988.”
Paing is featured in many Thai commercials and TV shows. His first fanmeet in Thailand took place in 2019 at Siam Paragon, drawing a large number of Thai and Burmese fans.