• Saturday, Nov 27, 2021
  • Last Update : 01:37 am

Myanmar activists say more than 800 killed by security forces since coup

  • Published at 04:16 pm May 18th, 2021
Myanmar Anti-coup Protest
File photo: Demonstrators block a road during an anti-coup protest in Yangon on March 4, 2021 Reuters

Myanmar Army has responded to protests by pro-democracy supporters in cities and towns with lethal force

More than 800 people have been killed by Myanmar's security forces since a wave of protests broke out across the country after the military seized power in a coup in February, an activist group said.

Myanmar has been in turmoil since the army ousted Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi's elected government and detained her and officials of her National League for Democracy party.

The military has responded to protests by pro-democracy supporters in cities and towns with lethal force, while there has been an upsurge in fighting between the army and ethnic rebels in border areas and newly formed militia forces.

As of Monday, 802 people had been killed in the junta's crackdown on its opponents, according to the activist group the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP).

"This is the number verified by AAPP, the actual number of fatalities is likely much higher," the group said in its daily briefing.

It detailed six additional fatalities including in towns in Chin state and in districts of the main cities of Mandalay and Yangon.

Reuters could not independently verify the casualties and a military spokesman did not answer a phone call seeking comment.

The junta has previously disputed the number of civilians that have died and said dozens of members of the security forces had also been killed during the protests.

The activist group said 4,120 people were currently being detained, including 20 who had been sentenced to death.

Residents flee

Some of the most intense fighting since the February 1 coup has emerged in recent days in Mindat, about 100km from the Indian border in Chin state as the army battles local militias.

Thousands of residents in the hill town in northwest Myanmar were hiding in jungles, villages, and valleys on Monday after fleeing an assault by the military, witnesses said.

Martial law was declared in Mindat last week before the army launched its assault, using artillery and helicopters against a newly formed Chinland Defence Force. The militia, armed mainly with hunting rifles, said it had pulled back to spare civilians from being caught in the crossfire.

Several residents reached by Reuters said food was in short supply and estimated as many as 5,000 to 8,000 people had fled the town. Roads were blocked and the presence of troops in the streets was preventing their return.

"Almost everyone left the city," said a volunteer fighter who said she was in a jungle. "Most of them are in hiding."

The US and Britain have called on the army to avoid civilian casualties and a shadow National Unity Government formed by loyalists of Suu Kyi appealed for international help.

A UN General Assembly vote on Tuesday on a draft resolution calling "for an immediate suspension of the direct and indirect supply, sale or transfer of all weapons and munitions" to Myanmar has been postponed, diplomats said.

It was not immediately known when a vote would be rescheduled. Some diplomats said it had been delayed in a bid to win more support.

The draft resolution calls on the Myanmar military to end a state of emergency, stop all violence against peaceful protesters, and respect the will of the people as expressed in the results of November's election.

51
Facebook 51
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail