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Photo: Hkun Lat via Getty Images

The United States on Thursday announced new export restrictions for Myanmar, and blocked the country's defense and home affairs ministries and other entities from some types of trade.

The big picture: The new rules come in response to the escalating military crackdown on anti-coup protesters in Myanmar.

Details: The new rules include a more restrictive review of license applications for exports and reexports involving sensitive items subject to the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) to any end user in Myanmar.

  • Exports of items intended for military use are subjected to additional restrictions under the EAR, with applications reviewed "under a presumption of denial."
  • The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) is applying the measures "consistently with the policy applied to similar transactions involving the People’s Republic of China, Russia, and Venezuela."
  • BIS has also added Myanmar's defense and home affairs ministries, the Myanmar Economic Corporation and the Myanmar Economic Holding Limited to the Entity List, which is used to limit export licensing for individuals or organizations "reasonably believed to be involved ... in activities contrary to the national security or foreign policy interests of the United States."

What they're saying: "The United States remains fully committed to the people of Burma, and strongly condemns violence by the Burmese military against peaceful protesters," the Commerce Department said in a statement.

  • "We will not allow the Burmese military to continue to benefit from access to items subject to the EAR. Commerce is reviewing potential additional measures as warranted by the military’s actions," the department added.
  • "The U.S. government will continue to hold perpetrators of the coup responsible for their actions."

Go deeper

Mar 4, 2021 - World

UN rights chief: At least 54 killed, 1,700 detained since Myanmar coup

A Feb. 7 protest in Yangon, Myanmar. Photo: Getty Images/Getty Images

Police and military officers in Myanmar have killed at least 54 people during anti-coup protests, while "arbitrarily" detaining over 1,700 people, United Nations Human Rights Commissioner Michelle Bachelet said Thursday.

Why it matters: Protesters have demonstrating across Myanmar for nearly a month, demanding the restoration of democracy after the country's military leaders overthrew its democratically elected government on Feb. 1.

Mar 3, 2021 - World

UN envoy: At least 38 anti-coup protesters killed by Myanmar security forces

Anti-coup protesters gathered in Yangon, Myanmar, on March 3. Photo: Stringer/Getty Images

At least 38 people were killed by security forces in anti-coup protests in numerous cities throughout Myanmar on Wednesday, Christine Schraner Burgener, United Nation secretary-general special envoy to Myanmar, announced at a press conference.

Why it matters: It was the bloodiest day in Myanmar since the country's military leaders overthrew its democratically elected government on Feb. 1. In total, more than 50 people have died since the start of the coup.

Tina Reed, author of Vitals
13 mins ago - Health

Health care workers hit new breaking point

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

The ranks of health care workers are dwindling and stretching what it means to be reaching their "breaking points," particularly at small nonprofit hospitals.

The big picture: Even as Omicron cases have begun to wane in some places, many hospitals are still fielding a crush of patients amid record employee callouts.