Myanmar junta with rifle grenades kill over 80 protesters

Ruben Fields
April 11, 2021

It continued: "Since then he has stopped following instruction from the Myanmar foreign ministry and he has been meeting with many diplomatic counterparts and Myanmar community to discuss the current situation in Myanmar, hoping to find a peaceful solution".

"I have been locked out", he told Reuters late on Wednesday.

Violence by security forces was also reported Friday in several other areas, including Loikaw, the capital of Kayah sate in the east, where live ammunition was employed, according to numerous social media posts.

A trishaw rider waits for customers along an empty road in Yangon on April 9, 2021, as the country remains in turmoil after the February military coup.

Last month, Mr Minn had called for the release of Ms Suu Kyi and ousted President Win Myint, drawing praise for his "courage" from British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab.

Demonstrations calling for the return of democracy and the release of Suu Kyi have rocked Myanmar nearly daily since the coup.

Most protests in cities and town around the country have been nonviolent, with demonstrators espousing civil disobedience.

Worldwide powers have voiced anger and dismay at the junta's brutal approach, and imposed sanctions on key officials.

At least 614 civilians have been killed in the military's crackdown on protests and almost 3,000 arrested, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, a local monitoring group.

China and Russian Federation wield veto power at the Security Council and generally oppose worldwide sanctions.

"Our people are ready to pay any cost to get back their rights and freedom", said Zin Mar Aung, who has been appointed acting foreign minister for a group of ousted lawmakers.

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Asked about air strikes carried out by government jets on territory held by guerrillas from the Karen ethnic minority in eastern Myanmar, which reportedly killed at least 14 civilians, Zaw Min Tun said the aerial raids allowed more exact targeting than ground attacks which would have caused more deaths.

Almost 50 of the dead were children.

The head of the military authorities, General Min Aung Hlaing, insisted they had dealt with the protests "in a democratic way", in a speech reported yesterday by state media.

AAPP said that as of Wednesday, 598 people had been killed by the security forces since the coup.

He accused the protest movement of wanting to "destroy the country" and said only 248 protesters had been killed, along with 16 police officers.

Nineteen people have been sentenced to death in Myanmar for killing an associate of an army captain, the military-owned Myawaddy TV station said Friday.

The growing bloodshed has prompted warnings that Myanmar could slide into broader civil war. As the junta increased its use of deadly force against protesters it also imposed a total ban on mobile data use.

In response, some activists have started a daily two-page newsletter called "Voice of Spring", rounding up independent media reports and publishing on Twitter.

But as the police and military escalated the use of lethal force, a hardcore faction of protesters armed themselves with homemade weapons such as firebombs in the name of self-defense.

The military has repeatedly justified seizing power by alleging widespread electoral fraud in November's elections, which Suu Kyi's party won in a landslide.

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