Stepping up Myanmar coup penalties, US suspends trade deal

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States on Monday has suspended a trade deal with Myanmar until a democratic government is restored in the Southeast Asian country after a Feb. 1 coup followed by a violent crackdown on mass protests. The military overthrew the elected government, jailed Aung San Suu Kyi and other civilian leaders and killed and imprisoned protesters in the country also known as Burma. U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai said the United States was immediately suspending “all U.S. engagement with Burma under the 2013 Trade and Investment Framework Agreement.″ Under the agreement, the two countries cooperated on trade and investment issue, a reward for the military’s decision to allow a return to democracy — a transition that ended abruptly with last month’s coup.