03/11/2021, 14.00
MYANMAR
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Demonstrations in Myanmar: 17 killed. Risk of Civil War

by Francis Khoo Thwe

Today alone, there were 7 deaths in Myaing, 3 in Myeik, 1 in Mandalay, 2 in Bago, 1 in Myingyan, 1 in North Dagon, a neighbourhood near Yangon. Since the beginning of the demonstrations, there have been at least 60 deaths, including killed and tortured, hundreds of injured and about 2 thousand arrests. The UN Security Council condemns the violence, but not the coup d'état following opposition of China, Russia, India, Vietnam. Hypothesis of a federation between all the armed ethnic groups to counter the junta.

Yangon (AsiaNews) - At least 17 people have been killed in various cities of the country where crowds gathered to demonstrate against the military coup that has lasted since February 1.

The junta is using violence and lethal bullets in an attempt to smother protests: many victims have gunshot wounds to the head.

According to news from social media groups, seven people were killed in Myaing (in the center of the country) at the very beginning of the protest. The policemen tried to arrest some of the demonstrators and a fight ensued, which ended with the military firing on the crowd and killing some of the participants. Those killed are between 36 years of age (the oldest) and under 30 years old.

Other deaths are counted in Myeik (3), Mandalay (1), Bago (2), Myingyan (1), North Dagon-Yangon (1).

Since the beginning of the demonstrations, there have been at least 60 deaths, including killed and tortured, hundreds of injured and about 2 thousand arrests. Meanwhile, the strikes of the civil disobedience movement have spread throughout the country.

Last night, the UN Security Council condemned the violence against unarmed demonstrators, demanding more the military exert greater calm. But the Council did not denounce the coup, nor threaten sanctions due to the opposition of China, Russia, India, Vietnam.

China has since been subjected to an avalanche of criticism on Burmese and international social media, for always siding with the junta. Last night, however, the Chinese ambassador to the UN, Zhang Jun issued a statement saying it is time for Myanmar " to proceed with a de-escalation" and that "it is time to dialogue", claiming to have participated in the Security advice in a "constructive" way.

There are more and more calls for the various armies linked to the country’s ethnicities (Shan, Kachin, Karen, Chin, Arakan, ...) to form a single federal army to fight the national army led by the junta.

Almost in response to this move - and perhaps to confuse the situation - the junta today removed the Arakan Army, which fought with the Kachin in the north, but also in Rakhine against the local population and the Rohingya, from the list of terrorist groups.

If this direction consolidates, a civil war will be inevitable.

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