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Military government of Myanmar seizes bank accounts of George Soros’ Open Society Foundations

George Soros - Billionaire
Hungarian-born US investor and philanthropist George Soros receives the Schumpeter Award 2019 in Vienna, Austria on June 21, 2019. (Photo by GEORG HOCHMUTH / APA / AFP) / Austria OUT (Photo credit should read GEORG HOCHMUTH/AFP/Getty Images)

The military government of Myanmar, who took over the ruling of the country by coup initiated following voter fraud allegations, have now seized the bank accounts of George Soros’ Open Society Foundations. 

After taking control of the country in a military coup, the Myanmar Military Government has seized several bank accounts belonging to or affiliated with George Soros’ Open Society Foundations, and has announced arrest warrants for 11 members of the organization in the country “on suspicion of giving financial support to the civil disobedience movement against the military junta.” The government will also take legal action against the Open Society Foundations, which they have claimed violated “restrictions on the activities of such organizations” and did not receive approval from Myanmar’s authorities for the deposit of $5 million into their Myanmar bank accounts. It is also alleged to have illegally withdrawn $1.4 million from its bank accounts.

The Irrawaddy, which tracks Myanmar political developments from Thailand wrote, “Military-aligned groups including the Union Solidarity and Development Party have accused Soros of manipulating Myanmar’s politics by supporting civil society organizations in the country.” The military junta also took control of assets totaling $3.81 million and 375 million kyats in OSF bank accounts at four private banks – Kanbawsa Bank, Ayeyarwady Bank, SMED (Small and Medium Enterprise Development Bank) and Co-Operative Bank, according to MRTV (Myanmar Radio and Television). The military said it had begun taking control of all illegal flows of money to OSF Myanmar, saying the foundation had breached the law that lays down the rules and regulations for organizations in the country.

National File recently ran a report regarding the ties between Soros, failed Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton and ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi. Hillary Clinton advised Aung San Suu Kyi to contest a parliamentary seat in the 2012 Burmese elections. This kickstarted Aung San Suu Kyi’s political career. Barrack Obama awarded Aung San Suu Kyi the congressional medal of honor.  She described it as “one of the most moving days of my life.”

Another important ally of Aung San Suu Kyi was progressive billionaire George Soros who supported her activities. OSF has been supporting Myanmar’s democratic transition and promoting human rights (including for marginal groups) since 1994. The foundation claims to have awarded more than 100 grants each year, mostly to grassroot organizations. The military regime also intends to investigate the accounts of The Daw Khin Fyi Foundation, a charity founded by Aung San Suu Kyi.  The move is believed to be a means to file more charges against the previous leader.

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ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH

POLITICS EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: FOREIGN POLICY

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