Myanmar Troops Fire at Funeral Mourning Bloodiest Day Since Coup
At least six children, between the age group of 10-16 were among those killed on Saturday.
Security forces on Sunday, 28 March, in Myanmar reportedly opened fire at a funeral service, informed eyewitnesses.
A witness present at a service in Bagh, near Yangon, informed Reuters that they were singing the revolution song for a 20-year-old deceased student Thae Maung Maung, when the security forces shot at them.
“While we were singing the revolution song for him, security forces just arrived and shot at us.”Eyewitness
She further said that they ran away as the security forces opened fire.
Meanwhile, as per the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, 12 people were recorded dead in incidents elsewhere in Myanmar, taking the toll of civilians killed to 459, in the aftermath of the military coup.
The ‘Fallen Stars’
As per Reuters, Saturday, 27 March, which was Myanmar’s Armed Forced Day, was recorded as the “worst crackdown on protests” since the coup.
At least six children, between the age group of 10-16 were among those killed on Saturday, with protesters referring to the victims as “Fallen Stars”.
Thousands of villagers in a border area are reported to have fled to Thailand amid air strikes by the military junta, since retaliation from one of several ethnic militias.
Meanwhile, as pointed out by Reuters, neither Mandalay nor Yangon had reported large scale protests on Saturday, but they bore “the brunt of the casualties”. Later in the evening on Saturday, people in Mandalay reportedly surrounded the police, accusing the security forces of arson, after five houses were burned down.
Meanwhile, many prominent international organisations and government leaders have condemned the military junta in Myanmar.
Dubbing the military crackdown as “unacceptable”, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said:
“I am deeply shocked by the killing of dozens of civilians, including children and young people, by security forces in Myanmar today. The continuing military crackdown is unacceptable and demands a firm, unified, and resolute international response.”
United States President Joe Biden also referred to the violence in Myanmar as “terrible” and absolutely “outrageous”, and told reporters in Delaware:
“Based on the reporting I’ve gotten, an awful lot of people have been killed totally unnecessarily.”
Meanwhile, Tom Andrews, UN Special Rapporteur, said in a statement:
“Words of condemnation or concern are frankly ringing hollow to the people of Myanmar while the military junta commits mass murder against them.”
The death toll in Myanmar has been on the rise, as security forces grow increasingly violent in suppressing those protesting the 1 February coup that had overthrown the elected government of Aung San Suu Kyi.
Unfazed by the loss of human lives and the ensuing international criticism, Myanmar Junta Chief Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, in his televised speech on the occasion of Armed Forces Day, said that terrorism can be “harmful to state’s tranquility and social security”.
Meanwhile, the official Twitter handle of the Myanmar Civil Disobedience Movement informed that the Indian embassy in Myanmar had sent their military attaché to the military junta’s ‘Armed Forces Day’ ceremony and asked India:
“Why do you shake hands with the generals whose hands are soaked with our blood?”
(With inputs from Reuters.)
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