Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Despite the junta’s warnings, there are widespread protests and strikes in Myanmar


Hundreds of thousands of people have taken to the streets of Myanmar on Monday, but companies have stopped work and joined the general strike, despite warnings from a recent coup by the military junta that protesters are risking their lives, the BBC reports.

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In Myanmar, protests have continued since February 1, when the army carried out a coup d’état and placed the head of state, Auna San Suu Kyi, under house arrest.

Protesters are demanding an end to military rule and the release of San Suu Kyi and other politicians detained by the National League for Democracy (NLD).

Mass protests are taking place in Myanmar’s largest cities on Monday. The action has been dubbed “Revolution 22222” since the protest took place on February 22nd.

It is a reference to the protests of 8 August 1988, or “uprising 8888”. At that time, the army killed hundreds of demonstrators.

Representatives of the junta said on television that the protesters were “inciting people, especially emotional teenagers and young people, to embark on a path of confrontation where they would lose their lives.” The army warns people to refrain from unrest and anarchy.

Earlier, two people were killed in protests on Sunday.

Myanmar was already ruled by a military junta from 1962 to 2011. In 2010, a gradual process of liberalization began, leading to free elections in 2015 and the coming to power of opposition Auna Sana Su Chi a year later.

In 2017, Myanmar received widespread criticism for the army’s violent crackdown on the Rohingya Muslim minority, forcing many to flee to Bangladesh.

The army took power in the country again on February 1, 2021, after the victory of the “National League for Democracy” (NLD) in the elections at the end of last year. The military claims that the election was fraudulent.

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