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'How much more can we allow the Myanmar military to get away with?' U.N. envoy asks

NEW YORK (Reuters) - United Nations special envoy on Myanmar, Christine Schraner Burgener, urged the U.N. Security Council on Friday to take action to stop the violence and restore democracy in the southeast Asian nation following a Feb. 1 military coup.

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“It is critical that this council is resolute and coherent in putting the security forces on notice and standing with the people of Myanmar firmly, in support of the clear November election results,” she told the 15-member council in a closed meeting, according to a copy of her remarks seen by Reuters.

“There is an urgency for collective action. How much more can we allow the Myanmar military to get away with?” she said, adding that hope invested in the United Nations by people in Myanmar was “waning.”

Myanmar has been in turmoil since the army seized power and detained civilian government leader Aung San Suu Kyi and much of her National League for Democracy (NLD) party after the military complained of fraud in a November election.

Police in Myanmar on Friday opened fire on protesters against the coup, killing one man.

The U.N. Security Council has voiced concern over the state of emergency imposed by the Myanmar military, but stopped short of condemning the coup due to opposition from Russia and China.

Schraner Burgener again warned that no country should recognize or legitimize the Myanmar junta. She urged the Security Council to give its full support to Myanmar’s U.N. ambassador Kyaw Moe Tun.

Kyaw Moe Tun was fired by the junta on Saturday, a day after he urged countries at the 193-member U.N. General Assembly to use “any means necessary” to reverse the coup.

The junta appointed deputy U.N. Ambassador Tin Maung Naing to replace him, but he has since resigned and Myanmar’s U.N. mission told the United Nations, in a note seen by Reuters on Thursday, that Kyaw Moe Tun remained the country’s envoy.

Schraner Burgener also told the council that the situation in Myanmar was moving toward “an acute humanitarian crisis.”

“The coup has fundamentally impacted the labor force, investment, stability, predictability, connectivity and security. It is almost like witnessing Myanmar’s economy going into the state of sepsis,” she said.

Reporting by Michelle Nichols; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Howard Goller

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