Amnesty International on Thursday denounced the links of international companies with crimes committed by the Burmese Army . The organization has brought to light the funding received from Myanmar Economic Holdings Limited (MEHL) by some units of the Armed Forces of the Asian country responsible for crimes under international law and other human rights violations.
MEHL is a secretive business conglomerate founded by the Burmese military regime in 1990 whose activities span the mining, beer, tobacco, textile and banking sectors. According to an Amnesty investigation, various military divisions own a third of the group’s shares. According to the documents that the NGO has had access to, MEHL has alliances with various foreign companies, including Kirin , which is among the world’s largest beer manufacturers, and POSCO , one of the world’s largest steel companies.
“These documents offer new insights into how the Burmese Armed Forces benefit from MEHL’s vast business empire. It is not that MEHL inadvertently funded human rights violations, it is that its board of directors is made up entirely of major military personalities “ , says Mark Dummett, Amnesty International’s Business, Security and Human Rights Officer.