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Opinion: What does the death row hip-hop star have to do with dictators everywhere?

Zin Mar Aung is the Foreign Minister of the National Unity Government of Myanmar. Former political prisoner and legislator Zin Mar Aung was ousted when Myanmar troops seized power in a coup d'etat on February 1, 2021. She is currently abroad for safety. The views expressed here belong to the author. Read moreopinions on CNN.

(CNN)I'm thinking of a man who sang freedom. His name is Zeyar Thaw.

He released my country's first hip-hop album in 2000. In Myanmar at the time, this was almost a revolution. His rap has influenced the lives of many people.

At that time, anyone who talked about freedom lived a dangerous life. The music of Zeyar Thaw, the founder of Generation Wave, amovementin favor of democracy, inevitably involved him in politics.

Zeyar Thaw was released and elected to Congress in 2011, after being put in jail for his political activities, and just as our democratic transition began. ..

Now he is sitting on death row. A few weeks ago, Zeyar Thaw and his fellow freelance activist Ko Jimmy were sentenced to death in February 2021 by a military government in whichstole power. In the country in decades.
Their crime. The administrationhas accused them of being "involved in acts of terrorism". What does this mean. That they believe in freedom.
The National Unity Government of Myanmar (NUG)has recorded about 3,000 people killed since the illegal coup. More than a million people have been displaced and many are looking for shelter in refugee camps. An additional 1.6 million people lost their jobs. NUG estimates that more than 19,000 homes have been destroyed.
I was elected by the constituencies in November 2020. I took the oath of office and waited for the election of the next president. However, on February 1, 2021, asoldier under the command of Senior General Min Aung Hlaing surrounded the dormitory where we lived as members of parliament. They forced each of us to make a choice-whether we succumb to their guns or resist.

I had been struggling as a political prisoner for 11 years under the previous military junta from 1998 to 2009. Most of the people I spent in the cell. This time I couldn't see another despot driving my country into turmoil. I chose resistance.

Zeyar Thaw and Ko Jimmy, as well as thousands of people across Myanmar. Nurses, teachers, doctors, farmers, and even children-they came out on the street in opposition to unwanted coups.

As elected members of parliament, we justify ourselves. We formed the National Unity Government of Myanmar because our freedom cannot be stolen by military Russian guns.

Russia continues to primarily supply weapons, equipment, trainingto my country's army, including fighters, helicopters, and drones. Since the coup, it has been used forbombing and killing civilians.

We are directly experiencing that Russia's military intervention is not limited to Ukraine. Russia and Myanmar are strengthening their ties and see them as part of their greater strategic involvement with Southeast Asia. This is a collaborative attempt to promote dictatorship in the region and erode democracy.

Next, the juntaupheldin Russia's President Vladimir Putin and his invasion of Ukraine. Just last week, a high-level delegation from the Military Council attended the 25thSt. Petersburg International Economic Forumwith the aim of strengthening relations with the Russian government.

We live in a world where dictators support each other to maintain their strength. Therefore, it must be clear that the struggle for democracy and freedom by the people of Myanmar is a struggle for all.

I am the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the National Unity Government of Myanmar. It is my job to tell the world that we will not lose. But what can you tell the people of Myanmar in return? What is the world saying to us?

No country has officially recognized General Min Aung Hlaing's administration for more than a year since the coup. The army continues its campaign of violence-killing, burning, destroying food and crops and imprisoning people for free. The general has been accused ofhorrific crimesagainst the Rohingya Muslim community and other ethnic minorities in our country.

It targets what it calls, nominates "terrorists" and claims that many of these incidents are blamed on resistance fighters rather than their own troops. ..

However, the wordsof US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in March 2022 should be heard. And now more and more people in Burma recognize that ending this crisis and regaining the path to democracy begins with securing the human rights of all people in the country, including the Rohingya.

We overcome this junta and change their calculations to understand that they cannot keep Myanmar forever in their chain of fear and greed. Must be.

This is our way.

We must deny the junta the income to fund the violence. The United States, the European Union, and the United Kingdom impose some sanctions on the regime. But to deny the foreign currency that junta crave, we have to do more.

The military continues to rely on funds from foreign companies to fund warfare. The flow of money, especially the oil dollar, must and can be stopped.

This also depends on Russia. Russian weapons are flowing into my country, and Min Aung Hlaing has visitedMoscowand has been praised by Moscow State University since the coup. Russia's veto makes it impossible for the UN Security Council to reach a common position in stopping this violence.

The Ukrainian example shows how the world uses economic means to put pressure on the government.

So far, Myanmar has mainly sanctioned individuals. More is possible and must be done to pursue oil revenues and the ease with which the military can withdraw and import stolen wealth using the international banking system. Weapons needed to prosecute a crime. Recently, the British governmenthas imposed sanctionson Russian companies supporting the military junta. This is a step in the right direction.

Myanmar military murders will not stop until they run out of income.

At home, the power of inclusion overcomes the military junta. My country has been at war with its own country for decades. Now, in opposition to the military, a new alliance between Myanmar's ethnic groups is building a new, shared future. We are addressing the root causes of violence through the new Federal Democracy Charter, a comprehensive decentralized Myanmar plan. We are learning together where we need to go.

This vision has been validated by our National Union Advisory Board, the most comprehensive, substantive and people-focused process we have ever taken in Myanmar. This NUCC brings together representatives of different political parties, ethnic voices and civil society to create a common solution to the challenges we face. We are learning together where we need to go.

And we practice this inclusion. Many parts of our country are already free from the rule of the military junta, thanks to the bravery of theethnic resistance organizationand the actions of the people to protect their homes.

In these areas, we are working with ethnic politics and civil society organizations to build local governments led by national representatives, who are responsible for health and welfare. I am.

Another element of our plan is to oppose thefake electionsthat the military government is trying to impose on the country.

This tactic is well known and creates elections where only they can stand and only they can win and parade the results as if it were important. This locks Myanmar into an endless cycle of incapacity and violence.

Our intention is to give the people of the country real freedom, and we know thatspurredwhen they last made their choice. It's not a ridicule that helps the general's ambitions.
Internationally, we claim the rights of the people of Myanmar to the government of choice. The French Senate and other parliamentshave already determined that we are a legitimate government because of the power of the 2020 elections and the consent of the public.
The currentASEAN Five Point Consensushas failed. The international community needs more effective strategies to support Myanmar and restore civilian government.
This should start with a more effective plan to provide humanitarian aid.If the donor grants the army a veto on how it is provided, efforts to provide assistance will fail --- Min Aung Hlaing and his Henchman do not care about the suffering of the people. .. They have targeted thefood supplyto starve our people, even in the last few days.

They have revealed that they want full control of humanitarian aid as a way to gain legitimacy and harness their strategies.

We at the National Unity Government of Myanmar are ready to help humanitarian agencies reach the most deprived. Myanmar has a resilient civil society doing incredible work to serve its communities. Humanitarian aid can and should be provided accountably to the people of Myanmar.

Finally, we must detain Min Aung Hlaing and his Henchman to explain the crimes they committed. Killed children, taken in prisontortured people, villagers were forced to see theircrops destroyed-Victims have the right to justice. Not denied by them.

We have seen the international reaction to Russia's invasion of Ukraine. The reaction gives me hope. We do not want to live in a world where such crimes may be exempt. People believe that Ukraine is free and should be free.

My country, its people, and my friends Zeyar Thaw and Ko Jimmy are about to be killed. They are waiting for the world to believe that Myanmar will also be free.