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Myanmar’s junta imposed martial law in strongholds of anti-military resistance this week, a move aimed at stamping out the opposition in areas where people have taken up arms against the army following its coup two years ago, Al Jazeera reported.

Junta officials said the new measures will affect 37 townships across eight states and regions. The new measures will force those accused of crimes such as treason or “spreading false news” to be tried by military tribunals.

No appeals will be allowed for convictions, except in cases where the death penalty has been imposed.

The imposition of martial law follows a move by the ruling junta to extend the state of emergency it first imposed when it seized power on Feb. 1, 2021, and ousted the civilian government of Aung San Suu Kyi. The six-month extension delays elections the military pledged to hold in August.

Army officials said the delay was necessary because the country remains in an “abnormal” state and needs time to prepare for elections.

The military junta has been fighting various armed groups in the country, following the peaceful anti-coup protests that swept the country two years ago.

Nearly 2,950 civilians have been killed after the army launched a bloody crackdown against protesters.

Western nations and the opposition National Unity Government have condemned the extension of the state of emergency, cautioning that the military will increase the killings and torture of people under the pretext of stabilizing the country.

Before the extension, the US and its allies imposed a series of new sanctions on Myanmar’s junta members and officials of the state’s energy industry, Reuters noted.

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