The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) opened a summit this week without Myanmar, which stayed away to protest junta chief Sr. Gen. Min Aung Hlaing being barred from the meeting. The leader of the Feb. 1 military coup was excluded from the online summit because he has backtracked on allowing a special ASEAN envoy to Myanmar access to all political parties and other agreements reached during an emergency meeting of the 10-nation bloc’s leaders in Jakarta in April. Min Aung Hlaing’s regime has killed nearly 1,200 people and arrested, charged, or sentenced more than 7,000 others in the nine months since the coup. Despite prisoner amnesties that freed more than 30 journalists arrested for their reporting, 34 members of the media are still in junta custody.
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