Military coup, Myanmar

This item appears on page 5 of the April 2021 issue.

The Myanmar military arrested leader Aung San Suu Kyi and took control of the country on Feb. 1, citing voting irregularities in a November election. In response, large protests have occurred throughout the country in support of Aung and other arrested government leaders from her party.

In Yangon, despite military warnings that soldiers would respond with force as well as a threat of 20-year prison sentences, tens of thousands of people protested the coup over multiple days, culminating in hundreds of thousands of protesters joining a general strike in the city on Feb 22.

In clashes between soldiers and protesters throughout the protests, at least three protesters have been killed with multiple injuries reported on both sides.

On Feb. 25, about 1,000 civilian supporters of the armed forces, armed with knives, pipes, clubs and other martial weapons, attacked anti-coup protesters in Yangon. The number of casualties in those clashes was unknown at press time.

In the deadliest day of the protests, at least 18 people were killed on Feb. 28 when the military fired on demonstrators with live ammunition. Despite that incident, protests were continuing at press time.