Protests sweep Myanmar to oppose coup, support Suu Kyi

2021 02 07T103013Z 1 LYNXMPEH1607X RTROPTP 4 MYANMAR POLITICS scaled

People rally in a protest in opposition to the navy coup and demand the discharge of elected chief Aung San Suu Kyi, in Yangon, Myanmar, February 7, 2021. REUTERS/Stringer


Tens of 1000’s of individuals rallied throughout Myanmar on Sunday to denounce final week’s coup and demand the discharge of elected chief Aung San Suu Kyi, within the largest protests because the 2007 Saffron Revolution that helped lead to democratic reforms.

On the second day of widespread protests, crowds within the largest metropolis, Yangon, sported crimson shirts, crimson flags, and crimson balloons, the colour of Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy Party (NLD).

“We don’t want military dictatorship! We want democracy!” they chanted.

On Sunday afternoon, the junta ended a day-long blockade of the web that had additional infected anger because the coup final Monday that has halted the Southeast Asian nation’s troubled transition to democracy and drawn worldwide outrage.

Massive crowds from all corners of Yangon gathered in townships, filling streets as they headed in the direction of the Sule Pagoda on the coronary heart of town, additionally a rallying level in the course of the Buddhist monk-led 2007 protests and others in 1988.

A line of armed police with riot shields arrange barricades however didn’t strive to cease the demonstration. Some marchers introduced police with flowers as an indication of peace.

Protesters gestured with the three-finger salute that has develop into a logo of protest in opposition to the coup. Drivers honked their horns and passengers held up pictures of Suu Kyi.

“We don’t want a dictatorship for the next generation,” stated 21-year-old Thaw Zin. “We will not finish this revolution until we make history. We will fight to the end.”

There was no remark from the junta within the capital Naypyitaw, greater than 350 km (220 miles) north of Yangon and state-run tv information carried no point out of the protests.

An inside word for U.N. workers estimated that 1,000 individuals joined a protest in Naypyidaw whereas there have been 60,000 in Yangon alone. Protests have been reported within the second metropolis of Mandalay and plenty of cities and even villages throughout the nation of 53 million people who stretches from Indian Ocean islands to the fringes of the Himalayas.

The demonstrations have largely been peaceable, not like the bloody crackdowns seen in 1998 and 2007.

But pictures have been heard within the southeastern city of Myawaddy as uniformed police with weapons charged a gaggle of a few hundred protesters, the stay video confirmed. Pictures of protesters afterward confirmed what appeared to be rubber bullet accidents.


“Anti-coup protests show every sign of gaining steam. On the one hand, given history, we can well expect the reaction to come,” wrote creator and historian Thant Myint-U on Twitter.

“On the other, Myanmar society today is entirely different from 1988 and even 2007. Anything’s possible.”

With no web and official information scarce, rumors swirled in regards to the destiny of Suu Kyi and her cupboard. A narrative that she had been launched drew crowds out to rejoice on Saturday, nevertheless it was shortly quashed by her lawyer.

Suu Kyi, 75, faces fees of illegally importing six walkie-talkies and is being held in police detention for investigation till Feb. 15. Her lawyer stated he has not been allowed to see her.

She gained the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991 for campaigning for democracy and spent practically 15 years below home arrest throughout a long time of struggling to finish virtually half a century of military rule earlier than the beginning of a troubled transition to democracy in 2011.

Army commander Min Aung Hlaing carried out the coup on the grounds of fraud in a Nov. 8 election through which Suu Kyi’s get together gained a landslide. The electoral fee dismissed the allegations of malpractice.

More than 160 individuals have been arrested because the navy seized energy, stated Thomas Andrews, the United Nations particular rapporteur on Myanmar.

“The generals are now attempting to paralyze the citizen movement of resistance – and keep the outside world in the dark – by cutting virtually all internet access,” Andrews stated in a press release on Sunday.

“We must all stand with the people of Myanmar in their hour of danger and need. They deserve nothing less.”


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