United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urged the international community to ensure the failure of the military coup in Myanmar.
He said that reversing the elections is “unacceptable”, and the coup leaders must be convinced that this is not a way to govern the country.
The UN Security Council is discussing issuing a possible statement, but China is expected to prevent condemnation of the coup.
Leader Aung San Suu Kyi was arrested when the army seized power on Monday.
Police in Myanmar later indicted Suu Kyi, who was held in pretrial detention until 15 February. She has not heard any news about her or President Win Myint since the coup.
The coup, led by Armed Forces Commander Min Aung Hling, saw the installation of an 11-member military council.
The military, which declared a year-long state of emergency, sought to justify its actions by claiming fraud in November’s elections, which Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy won.
It was reported that the army had ordered the blocking of Facebook, on the grounds that the social media platform was impeding “restoring stability.”
On Thursday, users said they could not access Facebook. One of the pages of the site created to coordinate opposition to the coup won tens of thousands of likes.
The Secretary-General of the United Nations called for the restoration of constitutional order in Myanmar. He said he hoped that there would be unity in the Security Council on this issue.
“We will do everything in our power to mobilize all the main actors in the international community to exert sufficient pressure on Myanmar to make sure this coup fails,” he said.
“It is absolutely unacceptable to reverse the results of the elections and to reflect the will of the people,” he added.
“I hope to make the Myanmar army understand that this is not the way to govern the country and this is not the way forward,” he said.
Western countries condemned the coup unreservedly, but the Security Council’s efforts to reach a common position failed due to Chinas position.
Beijing has long played a role in protecting Myanmar from international oversight, and has warned since the coup that sanctions or international pressure will only exacerbate matters.
Besides Russia, China has repeatedly shielded Myanmar from criticism in the United Nations over the military crackdown on the Rohingya Muslim minority.
Ambiguity about a place Su Chi
It was reported that Aung San Suu Kyi is being held at her residence in the capital, Nay Pyi Taw.
She faces charges including violating import and export laws and possession of illegal communication devices.
The charges are contained in a police document – called the first basic report – submitted to the court.
The document states that she was remanded in custody “for questioning witnesses, seeking evidence, and seeking legal counsel after interrogating the defendant.”
President Win Myint was accused, under the National Disaster Management Act, of meeting his supporters in a 220-vehicle motorcade during the election campaign in violation of coronavirus restrictions.
Aung San Suu Kyi in brief
- She grabbed the spotlight internationally in the 1990s when she was campaigning to restore democracy in Myanmar during decades of military dictatorship.
- She spent nearly 15 years in detention between 1989 and 2010 after organizing rallies calling for peaceful democratic reform and free elections.
- She was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991.
- She led the National League for Democracy party to victory in the 2015 elections.
- It has been criticized for failing to condemn the military campaign that has seen more than half a million civilians from the Rohingya Muslim minority seek refuge in Bangladesh.
Activists calling for civil disobedience
There have been few indications of protests in Myanmar so far. On Tuesday and Wednesday evening, drivers blew their horns in the main city, Yangon (also known as Rangoon), and residents blew cooking pots to protest what happened.
The country was generally calm following the coup, with forces on patrol and a night-time curfew.
However, there were protests in hospitals. Many doctors either stopped working or continued to wear symbols of defiance to oppose the suppression of short-lived democracy in Myanmar.
The protesters say they are demanding Suu Kyi’s release. They wear red or black ribbons to denote objections to what happened.
And online, many changed their social media profile pictures to red, in support of Suu Kyi’s party.