Myanmar's Permanent Representative to the United Nations Kyaw Moe Tun speaks at the General Assembly on Friday, February 26, 2021, denouncing the military coup in his country. (Photo: UN/IANS). Image Source: IANS News

United Nations, March 3 : UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has received two conflicting letters concerning the position of Myanmar's Permanent Representative to the world body.

"I can confirm that we've received two letters. They're currently under review," Xinhua news agency quoted Stephane Dujarric, spokesman for Guterres, as saying at a briefing on Tuesday.

"We did receive a letter yesterday (Monday) from Kyaw Moe Tun, the Permanent Representative of Myanmar, which was addressed to the President of the General Assembly with copy to the Secretary-General's Office, informing that he remains Myanmar's Permanent Representative to the UN," Dujarric told the press briefing.

"We've also received a note verbale from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Myanmar this (Tuesday) morning, which was addressed to the Secretary-General's Office, informing that the State Administration Council of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar has terminated the duties and responsibilities of Kyaw Moe Tun as Permanent Representative of Myanmar and that U Tin Maung Naing, Deputy Permanent Representative, has been assigned as the charge d'affaires ad interim of the Permanent Mission," the spokesman added Kyaw Moe Tun, who spoke at a UN General Assembly meeting on February 26 against the Myanmar detention of the country's political leaders, was fired by the military authorities the next day.

In an emotional speech, Kyaw Moe Tun said no-one should co-operate with the military until it handed back power to the democratically elected government.

In a further show of defiance, Kyaw Moe Tun held up three fingers, a gesture against authoritarian rule that has been adopted by anti-coup protesters in the country.

Myanmar's state television announced his removal, saying he had "betrayed the country and spoken for an unofficial organization which doesn't represent the country and had abused the power and responsibilities of an ambassador".

The Myanmar military staged the coup on February 1 and declared a year-long state of emergency.

It handed all state power over to Commander-in-Chief of Defence Services General Min Aung Hlaing.

In response to the coup, Myanmar has witnessed continued protests demanding the release of former de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi and other senior officials of her National League for Democracy (NLD) party and also the restoration of the democratically elected government.

On Sunday, 18 protesters lost their lives, making the deadliest day of the demonstrations.

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