Thursday, February 25, 2021

Myanmar has new protests against military coup after death of protester

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A young demonstrator of Myanmar who was shot in the head last week while the police dispersed a crowd died this Friday, announced his brother, the first death among opponents of the military coup February 1st since they started protesting two weeks ago.

News of the death came when police and soldiers arrested about 50 people in Myitkyina, a northern city, after interrupting a procession carrying banners from detained government leader Aung San Suu Kyi, said a human rights activist.

Mya Thwate Thwate Khaing, who had just turned 20 years old, has been on devices since she was hospitalized on February 9 after being hit by what doctors said was lethal ammunition at a protest in the capital, Naypyitaw.

“I feel very sad, and I have nothing to say,” said his brother, Ye Htut Aung, by telephone.

His death could become a rallying cry for protesters who returned to the streets on Friday.

“I am proud of her, and I will leave until we reach our goal for her,” protester Nay Lin Htet, 24, told Reuters at a demonstration in Yangon, the country’s largest city.

In addition to the protests, a civil disobedience campaign paralyzes much of the government’s business, and international pressure on the military is increasing.

International sanctions

Pressure has multiplied on the military, who have so far ignored the numerous international condemnations and sanctions.

The United Kingdom, a former colonial power, announced on Thursday (18) that it will impose sanctions on three Burmese generals for “serious violations of human rights”.

Canada, meanwhile, will punish nine Burmese military officials and accused the junta of having carried out “a systematic crackdown by means of coercive legislative measures and the use of force”.

The head of the junta, General Min Aung Hlaing, became an international outcast after the 2017 Rohingya offensive against Muslims.

Last week, US President Joe Biden announced that Washington would block generals’ access to a $ 1 billion fund in the United States.

Human rights groups celebrate these initiatives, but believe that it is necessary to go further.
The sanctions “are not enough to hold the military accountable and undermine its economic strength,” noted Paul Donowitz of the British NGO Global Witness.

“We expect an announcement of European Union sanctions on Monday,” said Thinzar Shunlei Yi, one of the militants who launched the civil disobedience campaign.

Internet outages

Despite the harsh repression, calls for civil disobedience continue with numerous demonstrations and strikes in the country.

Myanmar suffered Internet outages for the fifth consecutive night, reports a specialized entity based in the United Kingdom, adding that there was a resumption of service on Friday at 9 am local time.

At that time, hundreds of people were already gathered on the great avenues of Yangon, the country’s largest city, with portraits of Aung San Suu Kyi in their hands, and crying out for “freedom for our leader”.

In the remote Sagaing region, protesters marched through the city of Monywa, with three fingers raised, a symbol of rebellion.

The junta continues to arrest allies of the former head of government, as well as officials who participate in the protest movement.

The Association of Aid to Political Prisoners (AAPP), based in Yangon, has reported more than 520 arrests since the February 1 military coup.

The military justified its coup, alleging that there was fraud in the November legislative elections won, en masse, by the National League for Democracy (LND), Aung San Suu Kyi’s party.

The 75-year-old Nobel Peace Prize winner, who has not been seen since her house arrest, is being accused for non-political reasons, such as the illegal importation of walkie-talkies and for violating “the law on natural disaster management. “. Must appear in court on March 1.

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Myanmar has new protests against military coup after death of protester