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Women in Myanmar have played a vital role in the pro-democracy movement since the 2021 coup. They have taken on combat roles and have been involved in non-lethal resistance efforts, such as mobilizing and organizing the local population and fundraising.
However, despite their critical roles and contributions, they lack proportionate representation in leadership positions within the pro-democracy National Unity Government (NUG), National Unity Consultative Council (NUCC), and People Defense Forces (PDF). This has resulted in non-lethal efforts receiving very few resources and provisions. Additionally, the lack of representation in leadership positions has led to discrimination and sexual assault for women soldiers on the frontlines.
It is crucial for the NUG and resistance coalition forces to harness the power of these women influencers and leaders by using a coherent Strategic Communication strategy and providing the resources and support they need to continue their efforts.
Furthermore, it is important for the NUG, NUCC, and PDFs to address the issue of discrimination and sexual assault against women soldiers and ensure that women have equal representation in leadership positions. The participation and leadership of women in the pro-democracy movement can greatly contribute to the resiliency of the people and the sustained rejection of the military junta.
U.S. Naval War College
Newport, Rhode Island
Myanmar, Burma, women revolutionaries, pro-democracy movement, female combatants, sexual assault, military junta, National Unity Government (NUG), women soldiers
Byrd, Dr. Miemie Wynn, "Women in the Frontlines of Revolution in Myanmar" (2023). Women, Peace, and Security. 30.