State violence in Mynmar escalated when police opened fire on hundreds of protesters in the cities across the country, killing 18, according to a UN report. It is the largest number of deaths in a single day since the coup began.
The police have increased their use of force in recent weeks, beginning with water cannons, tear gas before using rubber and then live ammunition.
On Sunday, the police descended on groups of gathering protesters, rounding them up before marches began. Footage on Twitter and Facebook shows protesters fleeing through clouds of tear gas after police open fire.
Police and military forces confronted peaceful demonstrations in Yangon, Dawei, Mandalay, Myeik, Bago and Pokokku with “lethal force and less-than-lethal force” throughout the day, said a UN human rights office spokesperson.
The violence, which has left at least 18 people dead and over 30 wounded, “reportedly occurred as a result of live ammunition fired into crowds.”
Since the 1st February coup, instigated due to the military’s claims of a fraudulent election, over 1,000 people have been arrested and detained, some of whom, the UN noted, “remain unaccounted for”.
Over the weekend, 85 medical professionals and students, and seven journalists, including an Associated Press photographer in Yangon, were detained by police.
Protests resumed on Myanmar’s streets on 1st March in spite of the crackdown.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken condemned Myanmar’s security forces and the “abhorrent violence against the people of Burma and will continue to promote accountability for those responsible.”
Having been unable to sell in churches for well over a year due to the pandemic, we are now inviting readers to support the Herald by investing in our future. We have been a bold and influential voice in the church since 1888, standing up for traditional Catholic culture and values.
Please join us on our 130 year mission by supporting us. We are raising £250,000 to safeguard the Herald as a world-leading voice in Catholic journalism and teaching. For more information from our chairman on contributing to the Herald Patron's Fund, click here
Make a Donation
Donors giving £500 or more will automatically become sponsor patrons of the Herald. This includes two complimentary print/digital gift subscriptions, invitations to Patron events, pilgrimages and dinners, and 6 gift subscriptions sent to priests, seminaries, Catholic schools, religious care homes and prison and university chaplaincies. Click here for more information on becoming a Patron Sponsor. Click here for more information about contributing to the Herald Patron's Fund