On 27th March, over 100 people were killed in the deadliest day since the military coup in Myanmar. Myanmar’s security forces killed these pro-democracy protestors in the bloodiest day since the Tatmadaw seized power. This day fell on Myanmar’s annual Armed Forces Day as a way to show the military juntas power. Reuters reports that over 500 protestors have now been killed country wide. This is including at least 43 children since the coup begun, according to rights organisation, Save the Children.
This coup begun on the 1st February after the country’s de facto leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, and other members of the National League for Democracy (NLD) were detained by the military (known as Tatmadaw). The Tatmadaw re-imposed military rule after nearly a decade of tentative steps towards democracy.
Cities and towns across Myanmar are consumed with protests and violence. But also, fighting has erupted between the army and insurgents in frontier regions along the borders, causing refugees to spill across the borders.
Ethnic minorities and groups that have been persecuted for decades are now at higher risk of persecution. These groups include the Rohingyas (where nearly 1.4 million reside in neighbouring Bangladesh) and people from Kayin, Kachin and Shan state, amongst others. The safety of these groups, and everyone in Myanmar, remains bleak. With the hope for any form of democracy completely shatter by the military junta, the security and future of these remains unknown and arguably unachievable.
The international community have condemned the coup and urged for the military junta to release Aung San Suu Kyi and members of the NLD. But, targeted violence remains against protestors, and, if anything, instances are increasing and the violence is becoming more extreme.