In February 2021, the Myanmar military initiated a bloody coup to overthrow a democratically elected government and install another brutal dictatorship. The people of Myanmar responded to the coup with a nationwide civil disobedience movement to prevent the junta from taking control of the government and cut off its funding sources. The military has seized control of government offices and has continued to escalate its human rights atrocities and brutality against the people of Myanmar as it attempts to solidify its hold on power.
Gas revenues from multinational companies including TotalEnergies and Chevron have sustained the coup.
From the onset of the coup, Total and Chevron ignored calls to act responsibly and instead continued to make revenue payments that they knew would fall into the hands of the junta. They also spread disinformation and lobbied foreign governments to ensure inaction by the international community on sanctions. Total sold its share in the project in 2022, and Chevron announced that it had sold its share in early 2023, yet each company first assured that the junta would continue to profit from future revenues.
The oil giants have not taken the steps to disengage from Myanmar responsibly. Most recently, after raking in millions in profits from its Yadana gas project following the coup, Chevron is capping 20 years as one of the Myanmar military’s largest funders with an irresponsible disengagement.
EarthRights has conducted investigations, worked with lawmakers and policymakers, and raised public awareness to support the people of Myanmar and pressure the financial backers of the Myanmar military. You can take action with us here to help protect and support the people of Myanmar.
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Our Long History in Myanmar
When Unocal, a U.S. oil and gas company now part of Chevron, partnered with the notorious Burmese military to build a gas pipeline, knowing the military would commit human rights abuses, we filed a landmark lawsuit against Unocal. The company was forced to settle in 2003, marking the first time a human rights lawsuit against a multinational corporation resulted in compensation for the survivors. Learn more.
“After experiencing the 1988 student uprisings in Myanmar, I am horrified by the brutality of the military’s actions. Thousands of people, including journalists and medical workers, have been violently detained. The military’s brutal wars continue in ethnic areas, displacing thousands of people.”
-Ka Hsaw Wa, EarthRights Executive Director