Myanmar Implements Mandatory Conscription Amid Increasing Armed Conflict and Civilian Resistance



In a recent development, thousands of young individuals are fleeing Myanmar amid the country’s military junta’s implementation of mandatory conscription laws. This move comes as the government faces difficulties in containing armed rebel groups seeking greater autonomy. The conscription law requires men aged 18 to 35 and women aged 18 to 27 to serve in the army for up to two years, including former security personnel. This has led to a significant increase in people seeking visas at the Thai Embassy in Yangon, hoping to escape military service. Experts view this as a sign of desperation from the junta, struggling with resource constraints and increasing resistance.

  • Thousands are fleeing Myanmar due to the military junta’s mandatory conscription law.
  • Men aged 18 to 35 and women aged 18 to 27 are required to serve in the army for up to two years.
  • There’s a significant rise in people seeking visas at the Thai Embassy in Yangon to escape military service.
  • The government faces challenges in controlling armed rebel groups fighting for greater autonomy.
  • More than 6,000 civilians were killed in the 20 months following the February 2021 coup, according to the Peace Research Institute Oslo.
  • Rebel armed groups opposed to the junta have been growing across Myanmar.
  • The mandatory conscription is seen as an attempt by the junta to bolster its army amid increasing resistance and resource constraints.
  • Sanctions from the US and the world have significantly impacted Myanmar’s resources and finances.
  • The conscription law targets young people, who have been at the forefront of the anti-coup movement.
  • Forced recruitment is not a new practice in Myanmar but has been ongoing in borderlands for 30 to 40 years.
  • The new conscription law could be an attempt to legitimize already existing practices of forced recruitment.
  • There are concerns about the military’s ability to train and support conscripted individuals adequately.

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