Medical workers at the top of the campaign against the coup staged a protest on the third day of the country’s New Year.
At least one person was killed and several others were injured when pro-democracy protesters opened fire on Myanmar security forces in the town of Mandalay, local media reported on Thursday, with many young protesters reportedly arrested.
A photo posted on social media showed a monk carrying one seriously injured, with two others assisting him. The man died, according to a social media post quoting the Mandalay-based Times Journal on Friday.
As seen in several pictures on social media, the army surrounded them on Thursday morning before they could take part in protests in the country’s second-largest city.
The Mizima News Agency further reported that medical personnel, some of whom were at the top of the campaign against the coup, gathered early in the mandal but soon the troops arrived to disperse them, firing and detaining a few.
Mizima said there were no reports of casualties or arrests.
Among those arrested by authorities, however, were journalists identified as Ajax and Christopher of the Myitkyina News Journal.
The Civil Disobedience Movement (CDM) said Ko Y Mo Naing, an organizer of anti-military protests in the town of Manyawa in the Sagaing region, was also detained on Thursday.
– Row nay San Luin (@unsluein) April 15, 2021
Pictures of several damaged vehicles destroyed by security forces were also posted in Mandalay.
Opponents of the military’s 1st coup, ousting an elected government led by Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, have continued their campaign against the military in a series of rallies and processions this traditional New Year’s week.
A military government spokesman could not be reached for comment.
New Year’s protest
After 10 years of temporary steps towards democracy, the coup plunged Myanmar into crisis, with daily protests and denial campaigns, as well as strikes by workers in many sectors that paralyzed the economy.
The five-day New Year holiday, known as the Thingan, began on Tuesday, but pro-democracy leaders canceled the usual celebration to focus on their opposition to the incumbent generals.
The army said the protests were declining, but there were reports of protests in the Sagaing area, as well as in Hapakant Township in Kachin State and Kondowe in Karen State.
Hundreds of people were seen carrying anti-military government banners in the town of Fayso in Kayah state, and they ignored security forces’ warnings.
The Association of Political Prisoners, an aid agency, said at least 1,515 protesters had already been killed since the army seized power before the latest security measures were taken in Mandalay on Thursday.
On Tuesday, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) warned that a military ceasefire in protest could lead to a civil war in Syria.
Flagging on possible crimes against humanity, High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet called on countries to take immediate action to stop the military’s “campaign of torture and killing of civilians.”
Protesters in Mekhtila staged a “Thangiyat strike” on Thursday, the third day of the Thingan New Year water festival. Thangiat is a traditional thematic art form that fuses poetry, satire and music and is served during Thinggan. The marchers included lyrics in their demonstrations. pic.twitter.com/SUEmUu9CUv
– Myanmar now (ায় Myanmar_no_ing) April 15, 2021
“I fear that the situation in Myanmar is heading towards a full-blown conflict,” Bachelet said in a statement.
“Syria has a clear echo in 2011,” he warned, referring to the outbreak of a civil war that has killed nearly 400,000 people in the last ten years and forced more than six million to flee the country.
The bloody crackdown by the military government has drawn widespread international condemnation and calls for restraint পাশাপাশি as well as sanctions on Myanmar’s armed forces from several countries and their wider business interests.
Top EU diplomats have blamed Moscow and Beijing for blocking tough measures such as the UN arms embargo, but have taken firm action on the issue of diplomatic conflict.