The Burmese junta toughened its tone again on Sunday and warned protesters they risk death if they continue their protests, which has not deterred thousands from taking to the streets again in the country’s major cities this Monday.
“The protesters are urging people, especially exalted adolescents and young people, to embark on the path of confrontation, where they will perish,” the authorities warned in a statement in Burmese read on the public channel MRTV, and of which an English translation appeared on the screen.
The Burmese regime’s warning to use lethal force to end what it calls “anarchy” came at the end of a weekend mourning the death of three protesters and marked by funerals of a woman who died on Friday. Shot in the head and died after ten days in intensive care, this young grocer has become an icon of the anti-junta resistance.
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Three weeks after the February 1 putsch and the arrest of the former head of the civilian government, Aung San Suu Kyi, pro-democracy mobilization is not weakening, with daily demonstrations and a campaign of civil disobedience that disrupts the functioning of the government. ‘State and economy.
The UN special rapporteur for human rights in Burma Tom Andrews said he was deeply concerned by these threats and warned the junta: “Unlike 1988, the actions of the security forces are recorded and you will have to render accounts, ”he wrote on Twitter.
“The army has unjustly seized power”
The power’s warning did not deter protesters from taking to the streets of Rangoon again on Monday, where tens of thousands marched. Residents have seen a strengthening of security arrangements in the metropolis, with many police and army trucks in the streets and roadblocks around the embassy district.
“The army has unjustly seized power from the elected civilian government,” a 29-year-old protester said on condition of anonymity. “We will fight until we get our freedom, democracy and justice.”
Thousands of people also demonstrated in the new administrative capital Naypyidaw, Myitkyina (north) and Dawei (south). Many markets and shops have also remained closed in Rangoon and other cities after calls for a general strike to amplify the civil disobedience movement.
Escalation of repression
Since the start of the massive protests against their coup, the military has responded by gradually stepping up the deployment of security forces and increasingly using force to disperse the protesters. After using rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannons, the security services sometimes even resorted to live ammunition.
According to a local NGO helping political prisoners, 640 people have been arrested since the putsch. Among those targeted are railway workers, civil servants and bank employees who have stopped working in solidarity with the opposition to the junta.
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afp / vic
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