Myanmar forces make night raids after breaking up protests
March 7, 2021 07:35 AM NPT
MYANMAR, March 7: Myanmar security forces fired gunshots as they carried out overnight raids in the main city Yangon after breaking up the latest protests against last month’s coup with teargas and stun grenades.
The Southeast Asian country has been plunged into turmoil since the military overthrew and detained elected leader Aung San Suu Kyi on Feb. 1. Daily demonstrations and strikes have choked business and paralysed administration.
There were sporadic protests across Myanmar on Saturday and local media reported that police fired tear gas shells and stun grenades to break up a protest in the Sanchaung district of Yangon, the country’s biggest city. There were no reports of casualties.
Late at night, residents said soldiers and police moved into several districts of Yangon, firing shots.
They arrested at least three people in the Kyauktada Township, residents there said. They did not know the reason for the arrests.
“They are asking to take out my father and brother. Is no one going to help us? Don’t you even touch my father and brother. Take us too if you want to take them,” one woman screamed as two of them, an actor and his son, were led off.
Soldiers also came looking for a lawyer who worked for Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD), but were unable to find him, a member of the now dissolved parliament, Sithu Maung, said in a Facebook post.
Reuters was unable to reach police for comment. A junta spokesman did not answer calls requesting comment.
ARRESTS AND DEAD
Well over 1,500 people have been arrested under the junta, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners advocacy group. This association and the United Nations say that more than 50 protesters have been killed.
Myanmar authorities said on Saturday they had exhumed the body of 19-year-old Kyal Sin, who has become an icon of the protest movement after she was shot dead in the city of Mandalay on Wednesday wearing a T-shirt that read “Everything will be OK”.
State-run MRTV said a surgical investigation showed she could not have been killed by police because the wrong sort of projectile was found in her head and she had been shot from behind, whereas police were in front.
Photographs on the day showed her head turned away from security forces moments before she was killed. Opponents of the coup accused authorities of an attempted cover-up.