The ongoing crisis inside Myanmar is under control, the country’s junta chief Min Aung Hlaing said. He hoped that next year’s elections will be held as planned without Western interference.

Min Aung Hlaing’s interview with the Russian news agency RIA was published on Wednesday. He went to Moscow to attend an economic conference in Russia. He gave an interview to RIA there.

In the interview, he said, “We are committed to holding elections in the near future, we will try our best to fulfill that promise.”

“I also want to say that the election must be free from external pressure, otherwise it will not be free and transparent. We will conduct our own elections without external pressure.”

Criticizing the Western world, he said both his country and Russia wanted peace and stability. But the western countries are providing money and arms to the ‘terrorists’.

“Currently the situation is under control. Many events happened last year. Its dimensions were also extensive. Since April this year, the number and magnitude of incidents has been decreasing, albeit a gradual decline, which is quite significant.”

The junta chief also held a bilateral meeting with Putin at the economic conference. The report mentions that Myanmar will buy oil from Russia in rubles instead of dollars despite Western sanctions.

Aung San Suu Kyi’s government was ousted in a coup in February last year. Since then, the junta has cracked down on Suu Kyi’s supporters. Currently only 17 percent of the country is under the control of the junta government. The remaining 83 percent is controlled by various armed groups.

(September 8)