YANGON, Myanmar - Myanmar's ruling military warned on Friday to arrest individuals who invest in bonds issued by a shadow government, threatening them with hefty prison sentences for "terrorist" financing.
This week, the National Unity Government (NUG), a coalition of pro-democracy organizations, ethnic minority armies, and the surviving civilian government toppled by the military, announced that it had raised $9.5 million in the first 24 hours of its bond offering.
The earnings from the zero-interest bonds, according to the NUG, will be used to finance a "revolution" against the military in response to the military's February coup and brutal suppression of protestors. It hasn't specified how the funds will be utilized.
According to the junta's spokesman, General Zaw Min Tun, the NUG has been declared a "terrorist organization," anyone who provides funds faces harsh consequences.
"Action can be taken under terrorism charges with heavy sentences for those financing the terrorist groups," he warned in a news conference.
Myanmar has been in upheaval since the coup, with strikes and protests and a brutal military assault on activists. It also resulted in the development of militia formations affiliated with the NUG in numerous locations; some backed by armed ethnic groups.
According to activists quoted by the United Nations, more than 1,200 citizens have been killed in protests, and thousands have been jailed since the coup.