‘Terrified’ UN envoy issues warning on Myanmar as protesters face down military
According to Reuters, activist Khin Sander wrote on Facebook, “Let’s gather millions to topple dictators.”
A senior member of Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) party, who has not been arrested, Qiu Tow said, “Let’s march march. Let’s show our force against the coup government that destroyed the future of the youth Is. Our country. “
The United Nations imposed a special ban on human rights in Myanmar, Tom andrews, She said she was “horrified” by the potential for violence if planned mass protests and troops were mobilized.
Andrews said, “I am afraid that the likelihood of violence in Myanmar is high, as we have seen since the government’s illegal takeover on 1 February.”
Andrews said he had received reports of troops being taken from outlying areas in Yangon.
“In the past, such detachment movements preceded mass killings, disappearances and detention,” he said. “We may be on the hunt for military commitments for more and more crimes against the people of Myanmar.”
Soldiers from the Myanmar Army’s light infantry divisions (LIDs) – long documented to be involved in human rights abuses – have been seen in the country’s largest city of Yangon in the past week.
These elite rebel forces come under the direct orders of Myanmar’s military commander-in-chief Min Aung Hlang, and have been accused of human rights violations, carrying out violent campaigns against ethnic minority armed groups and civilians History has been brutally crushed by protests.
Analysts say that struggling infantrymen trained to fight ethnic rebels in the jungles and mountains and who now appear armed is cause for concern.
“These are light infantry divisions,” the Human Rights Watch researcher quoted the Human Rights Watch researcher about the crisis and conflict. “These are a type of units that can be deployed very quickly on city streets . “
Weier described LID as “an expeditionary force that departs when other units are not able to handle a certain situation.”
It is unclear how large a presence these soldiers have in Yangon. So far, clashes between security forces and protesters have been isolated.
The international rights group said the 77th LID was “deeply implicated in numerous documents of violent incidents and murders” and “was actively engaged in violent suppression of demonstrations.”
Analysts say that one of the reasons for the deployment of these frontline combat units may be that they are easily transportable and often move around the country. But also that his presence sends a message.
“LID has a very poor reputation and I think at the very least, people will recognize and recognize their presence,” said Veer. “The period of increased military presence is clearly something to demonstrate, and to scare, the resolution. This is not something we saw in the first week after the coup.”
The Myanmar army, known as the Tatmad, is also fighting some of the world’s longest civil wars against rebel armed groups. Tatmadov soldiers have long been documented by various human rights groups such as using rape as a weapon of war, and sexual violence against civilians, extrajudicial killings, tortures, forced labor and other forms of protection.
Since the coup, thousands of people have opposed or carried out our civil disobedience campaign in major cities in Myanmar, calling for power to be handed over to Suu Kyi and his party, the National League for Democracy (NLD). The NLD claimed a landslide victory in elections in November, taking 83% of the vote, giving it five years in government, but the military accused it of widespread voter fraud and used it to justify seizing power. did.
Yangon residents have reported a terrible fear for their safety after dark, with many fearing they would be pulled out of their homes by the police in a night raid, or an astonishing arson following the release of thousands of prisoners and Friday is terrified by reports of crime. The possibility of widespread internet shutdown at night has increased.
A journalist in Yangon, who wanted to remain anonymous for fear of arrest, said rights defenders and journalists are struggling to tell people what is happening.
The reporter said, “Journalists are in remote work and after hiding they are afraid of night arrests and raiding their houses. They can be arrested anytime.”
According to the United Nations Human Rights Office, hundreds of people have been arrested since the coup and most have been arrested without charge. The Assistant Association for Political Prisoners Burma (AAPPB) said at least 452 people have been detained in connection with the coup.
“There is a systematic move right now to scare people out of daylight. First of all, you have to remember, put it in context, it is a very cruel military, and it does not support any kind of reservation Does. Protesting for democracy in the past, “said Andrews of the United Nations.
By day, protesters – many of them young people – remain violent.
Activist Mayo Hcett, who could be seen accompanying the microphone rally crowd at a protest last week, said the protesters were fighting for their future.
“We are not fighting for a leader, we are fighting for the country, we are fighting for our future, we are fighting for our next generation,” he said. “No matter how bad they are, no matter why they are gunshot, tanks are powerful. At the end of the day, I believe that we are the most powerful people. If we unite.”
Myanmar was harmed within half a century Martial dictators with a series of separatist military regimes enforced their will through fear and brutality. In 2011, military chiefs created a plan that would allow the country to conduct elections, liberalize the economy and transition to a quasi-democracy while retaining its authority. This paved the way for Suu Kyi to be elected in 2015.
But the trauma of military rule is still followed by many in the country.
Mayo Hettett said, “All my life, I grew up in the Dark Ages, we were so afraid of everything. We grew up in military paradise, and I can’t have such a terrible experience for my next generation. ”
“We are fighting to rid Myanmar of military dictatorship once and for all, this is our fight. Yes, we are fighting for it.”
CNN’s Bex Wright and Richard Roth contributed reporting.