Myanmar coup latest: UK slaps new sanctions on Min Aung Hlaing

YANGON/BANGKOK — On Feb. 1, Myanmar’s military detained State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi and President Win Myint in the country’s first coup since 1988, bringing an end to a decade of civilian rule.

The Suu Kyi-led National League for Democracy had won a landslide in a general election last November. But the military has claimed the election was marred by fraud.

For all our coverage, visit our Myanmar Coup page.

Follow the latest developments here (Yangon time):

Friday, Feb. 26

3:30 a.m. Rather than isolate Myanmar, Association of Southeast Asian leaders have shown a willingness to work with the country to restore the democratic process, writes Thai international affairs scholar Kavi Chongkittavorn in commentary for Nikkei Asia.

“If they fail, it will greatly damage ASEAN’s credibility — and centrality — in the eyes of the international community. More than that, it will dash international hopes for any kind of mediation process to resolve the crisis,” he writes. “While ASEAN’s charter lacks any provision for expelling a member country, the 10-nation grouping has some leverage.” Read more.

1:00 a.m. Japan is considering halting new official development aid to Myanmar for the foreseeable future, Nikkei reports, amid growing global outcry over the Feb. 1 coup and subsequent deadly crackdown on protesters in the Southeast Asian country.

Separately, the World Bank has stopped payments for projects in Myanmar on withdrawal requests that were made after the coup, Reuters reports, citing a letter to the finance ministry.

Thursday, Feb. 25

10:15 p.m. U.K. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab announces further sanctions on figures in Myanmar’s military government, including armed forces commander in chief, Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing.

This second round of sanctions is directed at six members of the State Administration Council, which took over government powers after the Feb. 1 coup.

“The commander in chief, as chair of the SAC and head of the Tatmadaw (military), is being sanctioned for his involvement in overseeing and directing serious human rights violations since the coup,” according to a U.K. Foreign Office press release, adding that the other five figures “share responsibility for the violations.”

In addition, the U.K. Department for International Trade aims to “to ensure that U.K. companies in Myanmar are not trading with military-owned businesses, while protecting the important role that trade plays in poverty reduction and economic development.”

Raab says, “My message to the people of Myanmar is simple: the UK is working closely with our international partners to support your right to democracy and freedom of expression.”

9:40 p.m. “Myanmar’s coup is a disaster for Myanmar, but it also is a signifier of the continuing regression of democracy region-wide in Southeast Asia,” writes Joshua Kurlantzick of the Council on Foreign Relations, a U.S. think tank.

“The region, which once had made significant progress toward democratization, has backslid badly in recent years, with regression in former bright spots including Thailand, Indonesia, and the Philippines, as well as Cambodia and now Myanmar,” Kurlantzick argues.

7:40 p.m. Toyota Motor has decided to postpone the opening of a new plant in Myanmar amid heightened political uncertainty following the Feb. 1 coup, Nikkei Asia has learned.

The plant was scheduled to open this month.

2:30 p.m. Here are more scenes from Yangon, where supporters of the military took to the streets earlier on Thursday, with some reports of violence against anti-coup residents.

A military supporter points a sharp object as he confronts anti-coup residents during a rally for the armed forces in Yangon on Feb. 25.   © Reuters

Supporters of Myanmar’s military carry banners and flags through the streets of Yangon.   © Reuters

Military supporters use slingshots against pro-democracy Yangon residents during a rally in support of the armed forces on Feb. 25.   © Reuters1:00 p.m. The foreign ministers of Thailand, Myanmar and Indonesia intend to arrange an informal ASEAN gathering in August, a Thai spokesman says, explaining the results of Wednesday’s trilateral talks in Bangkok.”We agreed to hold an informal ASEAN foreign ministers meeting in August this year and the [ASEAN] foreign ministers will discuss about the meeting further,” Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Tanee Sangrat says. “Thailand and Indonesia agreed together that Myanmar is an important member of the ASEAN family and ASEAN can be a platform to constructively provide solutions for Myanmar and other members by adhering to the ASEAN Charter.”

Tanee also details a Wednesday phone call between U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, who doubles as defense minister. The spokesman says they discussed the importance of ASEAN finding a peaceful solution, with Austin stressing Thailand’s role in the bloc.

Meanwhile, Myanmar military spokesperson Zaw Min Tun tells Nikkei Asia that the meeting with the Thai and Indonesian foreign ministers was “so good” and “confirmed that ASEAN will maintain a non-interference policy.”

Zaw Min Tun also says that Aung San Suu Kyi’s State Counselor Office was abolished last Friday.

11:00 a.m. A crowd of military supporters marched through Yangon earlier on Thursday morning, toward the landmark Sule Pagoda. Residents showed their displeasure by banging pots and pans, to which the military supporters responded by firing slingshots. Footage posted on social media showed scattered violence, including what appeared to be military backers beating and even stabbing bystanders. Some were detained by residents and reportedly found to be former soldiers themselves, based on their ID cards.

10:40 a.m. Facebook has banned Myanmar’s military from using its platforms with immediate effect. “Events since the February 1 coup, including deadly violence, have precipitated a need for this ban,” the social media giant says in a blog post. “We believe the risks of allowing the Tatmadaw (Myanmar’s army) on Facebook and Instagram are too great.”

The post adds that all military-linked “commercial entities” would also be banned from advertising. On the other hand, Facebook says the ban “does not cover government ministries and agencies engaged in the provision of essential public services,” such as the health and education ministries. Facebook had already removed the Tatmadaw’s main page.

4:20 a.m. U.S. State Department spokesperson Ned Price expresses concern about the deportations by Malaysia.

“We continue to urge all countries in the region contemplating returning Burmese migrants back to Burma to halt those repatriations until the [United Nations Refugee Agency] can assess whether these migrants have any protection concerns before being sent back to Burma, noting that the Burmese military has a long documented history of human rights abuses against members of religious and ethnic minority groups,” Price tells a news conference.

4:00 a.m. London-based NetBlocks, the self-described “Internet’s Observatory,” reports decreased internet access in Myanmar.

Protesters hold up placards protesting the military takeover of Myanmar on Feb. 24 in Yangon.Wednesday, Feb. 2411:15 p.m. The United Nations Human Rights Special Procedures — experts independent of any U.N. member state government — have denounced Malaysia’s deportation decision.

“The Malaysian authorities in defiance of the court order breached the principle of non-refoulement … which absolutely prohibits the collective deportation of migrants without an objective risk assessment being conducted in each individual case,” experts say.

“The failure to ensure due process safeguards for all migrants including through case-by-case risk assessments and adequate protection measures on an individual basis, heightened their vulnerabilities and risk of exploitation and other violations upon return,” they say.

9:00 p.m. Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi has met with her Myanmar counterpart Wunna Maung Lwin in Bangkok, as Jakarta steps up its push for an Association of Southeast Asian Nations-led resolution of the crisis in Myanmar.

Marsudi traveled to the Thai capital after canceling a planned trip to the Burmese capital of Naypyitaw.

Indonesia faces the difficult task of uniting the 10-nation ASEAN bloc behind its efforts, starting with holding a ministerial meeting on the crisis.

“Thailand has conveyed its agreement, and so far ASEAN countries have expressed their commitment to support a meeting of ASEAN foreign ministers,” Marsudi tells reporters.

4:00 p.m. Human rights groups and some Malaysian lawmakers are calling on the government to explain why it deported over 1,000 Myanmar nationals despite a court order to wait, arguing the move could amount to contempt of court, Reuters reports. The Kuala Lumpur High Court on Tuesday had granted a stay on the deportation of 1,200 detainees, pending an application by Amnesty International and Asylum Access.

But hours later, the authorities sent 1,086 people back on three Myanmar navy ships.”We believe that the government owes an explanation to the people of Malaysia as to why they chose to defy the court order,” Amnesty’s Malaysia director Katrina Maliamauv tells reporters. The court has reportedly extended the stay order barring 114 remaining detainees from being deported for the time being.

12:53 p.m. Myanmar’s foreign minister arrives in Thailand for the junta’s first diplomatic talks since the military seized power in a coup, Reuters reports.

9:30 a.m. Indonesia’s Foreign Ministry issues a statement saying Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi will not travel to Myanmar to hold talks with Myanmar’s military leaders. “Been having rounds of phone communications with several ASEAN FM colleagues for the last few days, inc. FM Philippines, Viet Nam, Brunei Darussalam, Malaysia, Singapore, Cambodia and Laos on developments in #ASEAN,” Marsudi said in a tweet.

8:00 a.m. Protesters gather in Yangon, the 19th day since large-scale street demonstrations started on Feb. 6. Ethnic minority groups, as well as youth, are out in the streets in various parts of the city, including Hledan district in the heart of the second-largest city in the country.

3:35 a.m. Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne says she has discussed the situation in Myanmar with Philippine counterpart Teodoro Locsin.

Tuesday, Feb. 23

11:30 p.m. Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi is set to visit Myanmar on Thursday for what appears to be the first in-person meeting between the new military government and a Southeast Asian official, Reuters reports, citing a leaked government document.

Reuters says a Myanmar official confirmed that the Ministry of Transport letter was authentic.

Protesters drum their opposition to the coup during a demonstration in Yangon on Feb. 23.   © APSeparately, Indonesia’s foreign ministry earlier denied a protest-inducing report that was planning to hold Myanmar’s military junta to its promise of new elections. The junta claims last November’s election results were ridden with voter fraud.9:15 p.m. Some scenes from today’s protest outside the Indonesian Embassy in Bangkok.

  © Reuters

  © Reuters

  © Reuters8:40 p.m. Even as street protests continue, some major supermarkets and shopping centers have reopened, as have garment factories.”I have to earn a living, so I can’t take part in protests every day, but we closed yesterday,” a restaurant owner says, referring to Monday’s general strike.

Government offices and banks remain in effect closed as their workers take part in the civil disobedience movement.

Meanwhile, military leader Gen. Min Aung Hlaing was quoted in state media as telling his ruling council to “put its energy into reviving the country’s ailing economy.”

5:00 p.m. Malaysia’s immigration department says it has carried out a repatriation program involving 1,086 Myanmar nationals, despite an earlier court order to stay the deportation. Department Director-General Khairul Dzaimee Daud said in a statement the people were sent back on three Myanmar navy ships and did not include ethnic Rohingya refugees or asylum-seekers.

2:30 p.m. Members of the National League for Democracy, Aung San Suu Kyi’s party, say that their complaint to the police about a Feb. 9 raid on their headquarters was not taken seriously.

They say police have “accepted” their complaint, but not acted on it. As such, the NLD will bring the case to “a higher level of police authority,” they say.

2:21 p.m. The foreign ministers of the Group of Seven rich countries say the use of violence against people protesting against the coup in Myanmar is unacceptable and perpetrators must be held to account.

Police officers advance toward protesters in Yangon on Monday, when a massive crowd took to the streets to protest against the military coup and demanded the release of State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi, whom Myanmar’s military detained on Feb. 1.   © Getty Images“We condemn the intimidation and oppression of those opposing the coup. … We remain united in condemning the coup in Myanmar,” the foreign ministers say in a joint statement, adding, “We call again for the immediate and unconditional release of those detained arbitrarily, including State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and President Win Myint.”1:40 p.m. A Malaysian court allows a temporary stay of deportation of 1,200 Myanmar nationals scheduled to be sent back to their strife-torn homeland, after rights groups petitioned, saying deportation could endanger their lives.

1:00 p.m. A sign at a shop selling phones in Yangon reads, “We won’t sell products to people who do not participate in CDM [the Civil Disobedience Movement].”

According to the store manager, this shop was kept closed on Monday. “All shops in downtown closed, and we are also one of them,” he said, explaining the reason for the shop’s closure was “to allow the employees to do what they wanted yesterday,” indicating the shop encouraged its staffers to join the protests.

A sign at a shop selling phones in Yangon reads, “We won’t sell products to people who do not participate in CDM [the Civil Disobedience Movement].”12:00 p.m. Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi says Myanmar’s transition to democracy after this month’s coup should follow the wishes of its people. “The inclusive democratic transition should be pursued according to the wishes of the Myanmar people. Any way forward is the means to this end,” Retno said in a message sent to Reuters by her office.11:30 a.m. Groups gather in front of the Indonesian Embassy in Yangon to protest against Indonesia’s plan for new elections. On Monday, Reuters reported that Indonesia is pushing for the Association of the Southeast Asian Nations to agree on an action plan over the coup that would hold the junta to its promise of conducting elections, with monitors to ensure they are fair and inclusive, but not seek the immediate release of Aung San Suu Kyi.

Protesters gather near the Indonesian Embassy in Yangon on Tuesday. (Photo by Yan Naing Aung)Lei Wah, a 29-year-old office staffer who came to the embassy to protest, said: “I’m upset with the plan. We don’t need to redo the election. If we hold one, it means we agree with the junta. The election was already held in November, and we accepted it.”

10:30 a.m. Witnesses say the crowd at Sule Pagoda Road, the main street in downtown Yangon, is smaller than yesterday. Factories and shops have reopened after a general strike the day before.

A 32-year-old man working at a bag factory who was protesting said: “Me and the generation older than me suffered under the previous military rule — the education was very bad, and we were always afraid of the police. I don’t want that to happen again.”

9:00 a.m. Protesters start to gather in the Hledan district of central Yangon, marking the 18th day since large-scale street demonstrations started on Feb. 6. Police block the road near the U.S. Embassy, where crowds have called for Washington to put more pressure on the junta.

People gather to protest the coup in a commercial district of Yangon on Tuesday.8:00 a.m. The U.S. Treasury Department announces additional sanctions on two military officials who are members of the State Administration Council. A department statement says the sanctions are “in response to the Burmese security forces’ killing of peaceful protesters.”2:00 a.m. Local media report that around 10 p.m. on Monday night, security forces searched the house of a teacher who had joined the civil disobedience movement in downtown Yangon. The security forces reportedly left after finding she was not there. Talk of night arrests has been circulating among protesters since the coup.

1:20 a.m. The European Union is ready “ready to adopt restrictive measures” targeting leaders of the Myanmar coup, the Council of the EU said in a statement.

“At the same time, the EU will continue reviewing all its policy tools as the situation evolves, including its policy on development cooperation and its trade preferences,” the statement says.

EU nation foreign ministers meeting today have decided on a “set of targeted” measures in response to the coup, EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell tells reporters, but he stopped short of endorsing a cancellation of the preferential tariff treatment that has benefited manufacturers in low-cost Myanmar.

Monday, Feb. 22

11:00 p.m. Britain’s minister for Asia has summoned Myanmar’s ambassador to the U.K. for a second time this month and condemned the military’s actions against demonstrators.

Nigel Adams tells Kyaw Zwar Minn “the use of violence and force against protesters, which has already led to death and serious injury, was completely reprehensible and must stop,” according to a statement by a Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office spokesperson.

This marks the latest instance of British pressure on the Myanmar military for its Feb. 1 coup and subsequent crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrations.

Adams said the U.K. will “maintain the international spotlight on human rights violations and use all diplomatic levers available,” according to the spokesperson.

Demonstrators hold placards as they take part in a protest against the military coup in Yangon on Feb. 22. (Photo by Yan Naing Aung)10:30 p.m. “The military must step aside,” Foreign Minister Dominic Raab tells the Human Rights Council. “Civilian leaders must be released. And the democratic wishes of the people of Myanmar must be respected.”Raab says the U.K. will co-sponsor a resolution to renew mandate of the U.N. special rapporteur on Myanmar.

Speaking at the same council session, Malaysian Foreign Minister Hishammuddin Hussein does not mention the deportation issue but says his country will “continue robust advocacy for the rights of peoples who have long been subjected to human rights abuses, such as the Rohingyas.”

9:10 p.m. The Malaysian arms of human rights groups Amnesty International and Asylum Access have filed a judicial review in the Kuala Lumpur High Court to block plans to deport 1,2000 back to Myanmar in cooperation with the Myanmar military.

“This effort to halt the deportation is based on information from refugee groups evidently indicating that asylum seekers and refugees are among the individuals being sent to Myanmar,” said Katrina Jorene Maliamauv, executive director of Amnesty International Malaysia, in a joint statement. “There are also reports that those due to be deported include children in detention with at least one parent still in Malaysia. Separating children from their parents is an extremely inhuman practice that places these minors at grave risk and goes against the best interest of the child.”

“We believe the three UNHCR document holders have a legitimate expectation that they would not be sent to Myanmar, and deporting them would be in violation of their rights and in clear breach of the non-refoulement principle that the Malaysian government is bound by,” added Tham Hui Ying, executive director of Asylum Access Malaysia.

Malaysia has given assurances that it will not deport members of the Rohingya Muslim minority or refugees registered with the UNHCR.

3:21 p.m. United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres calls on Myanmar’s military to halt repression and release hundreds of people detained since the coup on Feb. 1, Reuters reports.

“We see the undermining of democracy, the use of brutal force, arbitrary arrests, repression in all its manifestations,” he says Monday while addressing the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva. “Restrictions of civic space. Attacks on civil society. Serious violations against minorities with no accountability, including what has rightly been called ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya population. The list goes on.”

“Today, I call on the Myanmar military to stop the repression immediately. Release the prisoners. End the violence. Respect human rights and the will of the people expressed in recent elections,” he says.

3:20 p.m. The European Union is considering imposing sanctions on Myanmar as a last resort following the coup and crackdown on protesters, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas tells reporters ahead of a meeting with his EU counterparts Monday morning.

“We are not prepared to stand by and watch,” Maas says upon his arrival in Brussels. “We will use all diplomatic channels to push for a de-escalation in Myanmar but at the same time, as a last resort, prepare sanctions on the military regime in Myanmar.”

Anti-coup protesters in Myanmar pack the streets as they gather near Mandalay Railway Station on Feb. 22.    © AP1:30 p.m. More people join the demonstrations in Yangon. “We are not afraid of the armed forces at all, but we have no weapons,” says a salesman on Sule Pagoda Road. “We are protesting here peacefully, and they cannot shoot us. I am excited — today’s protest is the biggest I have seen in my entire life.”Outside Sakura Tower, protesters experience both excitement and concern. “We must be involved, but we are also fearful,” says a 27-year-old civil engineer. “I don’t think they will shoot because of all the media, international organizations and embassies watching the situation.”

“We have some fear, but we are fighting dictatorship,” a 22-year-old university student says at a sit-in protest outside Sakura Tower. “We will fight for democracy in our country until we achieve it. We are very excited that our generation is fighting for justice.”

“We are now guarding the students’ rally, for their safety. We don’t want any harm done to them — lives matter,” says Linn Mg Mg Swe, a 25-year-old student and biker. “Generations are different. I think 22222 is better than the 8888 uprising as we have better strategies. We will win this revolution.”

Mon Mon, 35, is another among the protesters. “In 1988, I was just 3 years old,” she says. “I experienced the Saffron Revolution, but I didn’t participate because it didn’t interest me. But now I’m out on the streets because I can’t accept this kind of injustice and unfairness in our country. For now, I feel like I’m dutiful to my country because of taking part in this protest. If I was not in here, I would be feeling guilty.”

People take to the street in Yangon in response to the killings in Mandalay during the weekend.  8:00 a.m. A massive demonstration against the military coup begins. General strikes have been called via social networking services. Large supermarkets and factories are temporarily closed. The gathering is expected to be one of the largest demonstrations since the coup.In Yangon, crowds gather on the main street in the center of the city to complain about the tyranny of the military. Although the authorities have banned groups of more than five people, many citizens have ignored the order and are taking part in the demonstration. “The police are scary, but we are doing this to restore a democratic system,” a 25-year-old man says in front of the United Nations office.

The military deploys riot police in front of U.S. and Chinese embassies and U.N. offices, where many demonstrators have gathered, and block roads around the area.

On Saturday, security forces opened fire on a protest in Mandalay, the second-largest city in the country. Two demonstrators were killed when police and soldiers fired into a crowd to disperse protesters, sparking even higher tensions.

Activists called for a major protest on Monday to mourn the dead, dubbing it “22222” after the date, Feb. 22. The number is an allusion to 8888 — Aug. 8, 1988 — the date a pro-democracy uprising kicked off nearly 33 years ago, which ended up a bloodbath.

People gather near the United Nations office in Yangon on Feb. 22.1:50 a.m. The European Union’s Foreign Affairs Council, made up of member states’ foreign ministers, is scheduled to meet on Monday. The situation in Myanmar will likely be on the agenda. A key question is to what extent ministers will discuss proposals for sanctions, including the possibility of reviewing preferential tariff treatment for Myanmar.These preferences, introduced after the country’s shift to civilian rule in the early 2010s, have fueled the growth of Myanmar’s garment and apparel exports. Monday’s meeting is likely to coincide with more large-scale protests in Myanmar.

Sunday, Feb. 21

11:30 p.m. Some scenes from Yangon, where protestors held a candlelight vigil against the coup.

11:00 p.m. The Assistance Association for Political Prisoners reports that 640 people in Myanmar have been arrested, charged or sentenced since the Feb. 1 coup.

1:30 p.m. City Mart, a leading supermarket chain, announces its stores will be closed on Monday and reopen on Tuesday.

1:00 p.m. The funeral of Mya Thwate Thwate Khaing, the young woman shot in the head by police, ends in Naypyitaw, the capital.

12:00 p.m. Activists call for a major protest on Monday to mourn the dead. They dub it 22222 based on the date, Feb. 22. The number is an allusion to 8888 — Aug. 8, 1988 — the date a six-week mass pro-democracy uprising kicked off nearly 33 years ago.

9:40 a.m. Police have arrested Lu Min, a famous actor wanted for supporting opposition to a Feb. 1 coup, his wife announces. The army said on Wednesday the celebrity was wanted under an anti-incitement law for encouraging civil servants to join protests. The charges can carry a two-year prison sentence. His wife, Khin Sabai Oo, said in a video posted on his Facebook page that police had come to their home in Yangon and taken him away.

9:34 a.m. Facebook removes military’s main page under its policy of prohibiting the incitement of violence, the company said. “In line with our global policies, we’ve removed the Tatmadaw True News Information Team Page from Facebook for repeated violations of our Community Standards prohibiting incitement of violence and coordinating harm,” a Facebook representative said in a statement. The Myanmar military is known as the Tatmadaw.

9:30 a.m. Medical staff prepare for emergencies in Yangon. One says: “We are here to save the lives of people.”

5:32 a.m. The United States is “deeply concerned” by reports that Myanmar security forces have fired on protesters and continue to detain and harass demonstrators and others, U.S. State Department spokesman Ned Price said in tweet.

“We stand with the people of Burma,” Price tweeted. Myanmar is also known as Burma.

Saturday, Feb. 20

11:55 p.m. The U.K. will consider further action against those involved in violence in Myanmar against people protesting the coup, Foreign Minister Dominic Raab says, after two people were killed when police and soldiers fired to disperse protests.

“The shooting of peaceful protesters in Myanmar is beyond the pale. We will consider further action, with our international partners, against those crushing democracy & choking dissent,” Raab says in a tweet.

Britain imposed sanctions on three Myanmar generals on Thursday, accusing them of serious human rights violations following the coup.

8:48 p.m. Singapore expresses its dismay at reports of civilian casualties following the use of lethal force by security forces against demonstrators.

“The use of lethal weapons against unarmed civilians is inexcusable,” the Foreign Ministry says in a statement. Two people were killed in Myanmar’s second city Mandalay when police fired to disperse people protesting against the Feb. 1 military coup there, the bloodiest day in more than two weeks of demonstrations.

Singapore has been the largest source of foreign investment into Myanmar in recent years. “We strongly urge the security forces to exercise utmost restraint to avoid further injuries and loss of lives, and take immediate steps to de-escalate the situation and restore calm,” Singapore’s Foreign Ministry says.

6:35 p.m. Two people were killed in Myanmar’s second city Mandalay when police fired to disperse protesters. “Twenty people were injured and two are dead,” says Ko Aung, a leader of the Parahita Darhi volunteer emergency service agency in the city.

A volunteer doctor confirms there had been two deaths: “One shot in the head died at the spot. Another one died later with a bullet wound to the chest.”

3:00 p.m. The older sister of Mya Thwate Thwate Khaing, the 20-year-old woman who was killed during the protests, says her funeral will be held on Sunday in the capital, Naypyitaw. “I really want the international community to help our country, rather than just watching, she said.

12:00 p.m. Protesters gather outside the Chinese Embassy in Yangon for a moment of silence to mourn a 20-year-old protester who was killed during demonstrations on Friday. “She was young and had a lot of opportunities, but now everything had been destroyed. The military is just [staying power with] weapons, and it keeps threatening us,” said one male protester.

11:35 p.m. Railway staff march in Yangon and show support for the civil disobedience campaign in Myanmar.

11:00 a.m. Ethnic groups protest in a show of opposition to the coup that ousted Aung San Suu Kyi, despite some misgivings about her commitment to their aspirations for autonomy, community representatives said. “We can’t form a federal country under dictatorship. We can’t accept the junta,” Ke Jung, a youth leader from the Naga minority told Reuters.

3:20 a.m. U.S. State Department spokesman Ned Price offers condolences on the death of a protester in Myanmar “We are saddened to see media reports that a protester shot by police in Naypyidaw on February 9 has died, marking the first reported death … as a result of security forces response to the protests,” Price said.

“We applaud yesterday’s announcement of sanctions by the United Kingdom and Canada against the Burmese military leaders responsible for the coup,” Price also says, adding that Secretary of State Antony Blinken had discussed with Australian, Indian and Japanese counterparts “the urgent need to restore the democratically elected government in Burma.”

Two More Anti-Myanmar Regime Protesters Die in Mandalay

By THE IRRAWADDY 25 February 2021

Yangon – Six anti-regime protesters have now died since the Feb. 1 coup after two activists in Mandalay died days after being injured.

On Saturday, a raid on government personnel taking part in the civil disobedience movement (CDM) at a dock in Mandalay was carried out by police and military personnel using live ammunition, rubber bullet, tear gas and slingshots.

Demonstrators had appeared in the street to protect government staff from being forced to return to work.

Two protesters were killed immediately and more than 25 others were injured.

About 83 people, including some seriously injured protesters, were arrested without being treated.

On Wednesday, Ko Yarzar Aung, a 26-year-old protester, who was shot in the leg, has reportedly died at Mandalay’s military hospital amid questions about that the quality of medical care he received.

Dr. Aye Nyein Thu from a charity in Mandalay who tried to treat Ko Yarzar Aung told The Irrawaddy on Thursday that, except from some minor treatment, the military authorities did not allow her to attend to detainees before they were taken away.

She said that Ko Yarzar Aung would not have died from his leg injuries if he was treated properly.

On Sunday the authorities handed the body of Ko Kyi Soe, 48, who suffered from a head injury, to his family.

Ma Su Latt Win of Mandalay told The Irrawaddy on Thursday that her detained 22-year-old husband, Ko Tin Tun Aung, had not received proper treatment at the military hospital, despite being shot in the hand.

He is now reportedly being held in a prison. “I want him back home. I want to treat his injury,” said Ma Su Latt Win.

On Saturday, Ko Wai Yan Tun, 16, and Ko Thet Naing Win, 36, were shot dead by the security forces.

That evening a civilian vigilante, Ko Tin Htut Hein, was allegedly shot dead by police in a civilian van in Yangon’s Shwepyithar Township while he asked why the vehicle was breaking the nighttime curfew.

On Feb. 19, Ma Mya Thwet Thwet Khine, a student who was shot by the police at a protest in Naypyitaw more than a week earlier, died in hospital.

A medic from a charity treats Ko Yarzar Aung in a police vehicle before he was taken away on Feb. 20. / Supplied

After the Feb.1 coup, crackdowns have been held against peaceful anti-regime demonstrations in Mandalay, Myitkyina, Bago, Myawaddy, Thandwe, Naypyitaw, Mawlamyine and Myaungmya.

Police and military personnel have used water cannon, tear gas, slingshots, rubber bullets, live ammunition and air guns firing lead pullets.

Several journalists covering protests have been hit with batons and slingshots.

More than 100 people, including a pregnant woman and a five-year-old, have been injured by police and military personnel.

On Feb. 23, the G7 foreign ministers of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and US and the European Union’s representative condemned the military’s violence against the peaceful protests.

A joint statement said the use of live ammunition against unarmed people is unacceptable.

It said the military and police must respect human rights and international law.

The Assistance Association for Political Prisoners said by Thursday at least 728 people, including officials, leaders and National League for Democracy MPs, political activists, artists, monks, writers, protesters and striking government staff, have been detained.

Ko Aung Myo Kyaw of the AAPP said on Wednesday the regime is detaining increasing numbers and amending several laws illegally.

“The military is completely violating human rights. It must stop” he said.

You may also like these stories:

Myanmar Anti-Coup Protestors Get Creative with Thanakha in Fresh Protests

World Bank Halts Payments to Myanmar After Coup

Lawyer for Myanmar’s Detained Daw Aung San Suu Kyi Says He Has Not Been Able to Meet Her

25 Feb 2021 Daily Briefing in Relation to the Military Coup

Updated 25 February 2021

Prior to today, blockades had been set up at Sule Pagoda Road in Yangon to try and disrupt peaceful protests and demonstrations. However on February 25 these blockades had been removed for when pro-military supporters arrived. Over 100 pro-military supporters gathered at Yangon railway station. When they descended and began a procession, residents in the area began drumming in defiance of the pro-military march. When the military supporters entered the housing quarters of the railway station close to Theinbyu market they attacked residents using sharp objects, knives, heavy sticks and slingshots. 4 people had serious head injuries, 8 others had injuries to the hand, legs, and arms. Military supporters continued with verbal insults, a peaceful protestor singing democracy songs was stabbed by this violent mob. The pro-military supporters attacked residents and journalists, violently grabbing phones and attacking cars. 

A man who announced he was Mingalar Taung Nyunt Township USPD Chairman came with many police, he put pressure on the people to release an alleged Party Secretary and Party members the residents had arrested. But the residents explained they had already released the detained to another police force not accompanied by the so-called Chairman. When the media asked why  supporters were being violent, the apparent USPD Chairman responded angrily, and some of his followers were violent towards the reporters, breaking two camera equipment of the reporters and throwing verbal insults. Police did nothing towards these violent acts, they stood by and brought the Chairman and his followers back.

During pro-military rallies in the days leading up to the military coup, bamboo poles were sharpened and slingshots crafted. Military supporters carried these to make threatening gestures in the streets.  On January 30, in Bahan Township, Yangon outside a Kyay Thun Statute, protesters clashed with some civilians at a pro-military demonstration.  Some people who were there got into a verbal altercation. Then some bystanders were beaten, while others were hit on the head, and one’s NLD-branded shirt ripped off. In the aftermath of the coup, similar mobs marched in groups with vehicles in a show of force and demonstrative will to commit violence. They threatened cars with the image of the NLD and Aung San Suu Kyi, and car windows were smashed in a clear intimidation towards the general public to stop peacefully protesting in Bahan Township.

This morning, during a meeting of the Rangoon University Students Union, the police deployed security vehicles to occupy the campus. Outside of the university, 2 police vehicles, 8 military trucks and 2 water cannons were deployed which quickly escalated tensions among the people.

At the Magway Region Hluttaw Office 4 deputy officers, 6 senior clerks, 15 junior clerks, three drivers, one janitor and a gardener, a total of 30 employees were suspended from their jobs  on February 23  because of their involvement in CDM. This was in addition to 48 civil servants, including an officer and deputy director of the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw who were fired on February 23 for their involvement in CDM. The Kayah State General Administration Department also announced the dismissal of 40 of their employees on 24 February according to Section 171 of Civil Servant Code, for involvement in CDM. 26 staff from the Kayah State Hluttaw were also temporarily dismissed for involvement in CDM.

On 24 February in Taungtha Township of Mandalay Region the military raided the UEC regional office and took some documents and materials.Chairman and Secretary of Taungtha Township election sub-commision have also been detained, their whereabouts are still unknown.

Mandalay Region Chief Minister Dr Zaw Myint Maung’s wife Dr Yu Yu May and family members were released from house arrest on the evening of February 24. Dr Zaw Myint Maung has been charged under Section 505(b) of the Penal Code by the coup regime in Aung Myay Thar San Township Court, Mandalay.

In Dawei, Tanintharyi Region, Daw Moet, the wife of Deputy Director of the Department of Mines Thar Myat Kyaw, who lives in Byaw Tawwa Ward, was violently arrested by police on February 24 and charged under Penal Code Section 505(a) for posting social media posts criticizing the military coup. Also in Dawei, four persons, Moe Thu Aung and Tu Tu, Chan Myae Naing and Ye Kyaw Phyo of the Student Union, were arrested in the early morning of February 25 for leading a protest against the military coup. This is in addition to many more who were fined for participation.

The coup regime is intentionally trying to instigate riots and create instability by promoting violent thugs to march and crush peaceful protesters. The military is changing its crackdown tactics on the peaceful protestors, trying to create anarchy and riots against residents in order to take a position of authority amidst the instability. The military is creating violence and a climate of fear. The junta will step in to claim it is restoring security and order from a disorder of riots they created. In a democracy the police should be protecting peaceful protesters, but in Burma the police violently supress them, and the police support acts of pro-junta terrorism. These violent events are considerably similar to those during the 88 uprising. Yet the events today are even more stark than during the 88 uprising, captured on video and photographs.

As of February 25, a total of (748) people have been arrested, charged or sentenced in relation to the military coup on February 1. Of them, (4) were convicted; (2) to two years imprisonment, (1) to three months and (1) to seven days. (56) have been charged with a warrant and are evading arrest, (62) were released. A total of (686) are still under detention or have outstanding charges/evading arrest, including the (4) sentenced. From February 1 to February 25, a total of (8) people have died from violence including at peaceful protests.

AAPP will continue to keep you informed of verified daily arrests, charges and sentences in relation to coup, and update our lists to the details of these alleged offences.

If you receive any information about arrests/detentions of CSO leaders, activists, journalists, civilians and workers who have joined in CDM in relation to the military and police crackdown on dissent. Please submit to the following addresses:

Email :

Facebook :

Twitter :

In Solidarity,


Download link for Recent Arrests List (Last Updated on 25 Feb 21)

Myanmar Anti-Coup Protestors Get Creative with Thanakha in Fresh Protests

By THE IRRAWADDY 25 February 2021

Myanmar’s anti-coup protesters on Thursday are getting creative with thanakha — the country’s traditional facial cosmetic paste — to accelerate the civil disobedience movement (CDM), in which civil servants are encouraged to strike.

The latest campaign, popularly known as “the battle of thanakha” kicked off the day before Myanmar’s designated Thanakha Day. Protesters have put the yellow paste on their faces in Yangon, Mandalay and several other cities.

Myanmar has designated the Tabodwe full moon, the 11th of Myanmar’s lunar calendar, as Thanakha Day to promote the cosmetic paste.

Anti-regime protesters in Mandalay paint “CDM” in thanakha on foreheads. / The Irrawaddy

Protesters on Thursday painted “CDM” or three-finger salutes in thanakha, which is made from ground bark, on their foreheads.

Young protesters are helping to paint other demonstrators and to restore messages washed away by sweat during the day.

A young protester in Myaynigone, Yangon, said the use of thanakha was part of the process of holding fresh protests against the regime and to give moral support to protesters. The paste is recognized as a symbol of a mother’s affection and protection. Many children go to school with thanakha smeared on their faces by their mothers.

Young protesters in Yangon paint other demonstrators and restore messages washed away by sweat during the day. / The Irrawaddy

“Wearing thanakha equals a mother’s love, affection and protection. We will continue to fight until we achieve our goal,” he said.

Anti-coup protests have sparked a violent crackdown from the security forces with several fatalities. Protesters are demanding the military regime step down, free the elected leaders and hand over power to the party, the National League for Democracy, they voted for in the November general election.

According to the Assistance of Association of Political Prisoners, more than 720 individuals have been detained by the military since Feb. 1.


Anti-regime protesters in Mandalay use thanakha on their faces. / The Irrawaddy

A teenager with “CDM” on his forehead in Yangon told The Irrawaddy he wanted to encourage more public servants to join the strike.

“We have lost lives. I urge every civil servant to take part in the CDM,” he said.


Anti-regime protesters in Yangon use thanakha on their faces. / The Irrawaddy

Launched on Feb. 3, the CDM has gained momentum across the country and the regime has increased arrests of protesters and civil servants taking part in the movement.

Residents have prevented some arrests of striking civil servants in their neighborhoods by people in plainclothes claiming to be police officers. But more than 40 protesters have been detained across the country. Civilians have formed groups to assist striking civil servants in need.

Irrawaddy News


We, the undersigned organizations, call on the United Nations Security Council and UN member states to urgently institute a coordinated, global arms embargo on Myanmar in response to the February 1, 2021 military coup that has deprived the people of Myanmar of the right to democratically elect their government. Our concerns are heightened by ongoing violations of human rights and the security forces’ history of grave abuses against peaceful critics of military rule, as well as against the Rohingya and other ethnic minority groups.

Under the commander-in-chief, Sr. Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, the Myanmar military has detained the elected civilian leaders of the country, nullified the results of the November 2020 democratic elections, and installed a junta, the State Administration Council, under a manufactured “state of emergency.” Since February 1, the junta has increasingly used excessive and at times lethal force at demonstrations; threatened and arbitrarily detained activists, journalists, students, and civil servants; and imposed rolling internet shutdowns that put lives at risk.

Days after the coup, UN Secretary-General António Guterres stated, “We will do everything we can to mobilize all the key actors and international community to put enough pressure on Myanmar to make sure that this coup fails.” The UN special rapporteur on Myanmar has called for targeted UN sanctions on the military and an arms embargo, while the deputy high commissioner for human rights has voiced support for targeted UN sanctions on the coup leaders.

In that spirit, we urge the Security Council to immediately impose a comprehensive arms embargo on Myanmar. Such a resolution should bar the direct and indirect supply, sale, or transfer of all weapons, munitions, and other military-related equipment, including dual-use goods such as vehicles and communications and surveillance equipment, as well as the provision of training, intelligence, and other military assistance. The embargo should be accompanied by robust monitoring and enforcement mechanisms.

Any sale or transfer of military-related equipment to Myanmar could provide the means to further repress the people of Myanmar in violation of international humanitarian and human rights law.

Until the Council acts, individual UN member states should adopt measures at the national and regional levels to block sales and other transfers of weapons and materiel to Myanmar, with the goal of extending an arms embargo to as close to a global scale as possible.

For decades, the Security Council’s response to crimes by the Myanmar security forces has been inadequate, emboldening the military to continue committing abuses without fear of serious consequences. The current crisis demands a change in course.

On February 4, the Security Council spoke with a single voice to demand the release of all those arbitrarily detained and the protection of the country’s democratic institutions. Council members should use that newfound consensus to take swift and substantive action. An arms embargo would be the centerpiece of a global effort to shield the people of Myanmar from a return to abusive and autocratic rule.

The time to act is now.


  1. Access Now
  2. Advocacy Forum-Nepal
  3. AFL-CIO
  4. All Arakan Students’ and Youths’ Congress
  5. Arakan Information Center
  6. Arakan Rivers Network
  7. Arakan Rohingya Society for Peace and Human Rights
  8. ARTICLE 19
  9. ASEAN Parliamentarians for Human Rights
  10. Asia and Pacific Alliance of YMCAs
  11. Asia Democracy Network
  12. Asia Justice and Rights (AJAR)
  13. Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA)
  14. Asian Human Rights Commission
  15. Asian Migrant Centre
  16. Asian Network for Free Elections (ANFREL)
  17. Asian Resource Foundation
  18. Association of Human Rights Defenders and Promoters
  19. Association of Women for Awareness and Motivation (AWAM)
  20. Australian Centre for International Justice
  21. Australian Lawyers for Human Rights
  22. BALAOD Mindanaw
  23. Bir Duino Kyrgyzstan
  24. Brotherhood For Democracy (BFD)
  25. Burma Campaign UK
  26. Burma Human Rights Network (BHRN)
  27. Burmese Rohingya Association in Japan
  28. Burmese Rohingya Community in Australia
  29. Bytes For All
  30. Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR)
  31. Cambodian Food And Service Workers Federation (CFSWF)
  32. Cambodian Human Rights and Development Association (ADHOC)
  33. Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights (LICADHO)
  34. Canadian Rohingya Development Initiative
  35. Center for Alliance of Labor and Human Rights (CENTRAL)
  36. Center for Peace Education, Miriam College
  37. Center for Social Integrity
  38. Centre for Human Rights and Development
  39. Centre for Peace and Justice, Brac University
  40. CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation
  41. Climate Change Working Group-Myanmar
  42. Colorful Girls
  43. Community Resource Centre Foundation (CRC)
  44. Cross Cultural Foundation
  45. CSW
  46. Dawei Pro Bono Lawyer Network
  47. Democracy, Peace and Women Organization
  48. DHEWA (Development for Health, Education, Work, and Awareness) Welfare Society
  49. Equality Myanmar
  50. Equitable Cambodia
  51. European Rohingya Council
  52. Federal Association of Vietnamese Refugees in the Federal Republic of Germany
  53. Fortify Rights
  54. Free Rohingya Coalition
  55. Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect
  56. Global Justice Center
  57. Global Witness
  58. Htoi Gender and Development Foundation
  59. Human Rights First
  60. Human Rights Foundation of Monland
  61. Human Rights Law Centre
  62. Human Rights Office-Sri Lanka
  63. Human Rights Watch
  64. Human Rights Without Frontiers
  65. Info Birmanie
  66. Innovation for Change Network
  67. Institute for Asian Democracy
  68. Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion
  69. International Campaign for the Rohingya
  70. International Movement of Catholic Students (IMCS), Asia Pacific
  71. International NGO Forum on Indonesian Development (INFID)
  72. International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims (IRCT)
  73. Jewish Alliance of Concern Over Burma
  74. Jubilee Australia
  75. Justice for All/Burma Task Force
  76. Justice for Myanmar
  77. Kachin State Women’s Network
  78. Karapatan Alliance Philippines
  79. Karen Human Rights Group
  80. KontraS Aceh
  81. Loka Ahlinn Social Development Organization
  82. Maldivian Democracy Network (MDN)
  83. MAP Foundation
  84. Medical Association for Prevention of War (Australia)
  85. Mekong Migration Network
  86. Mennonite Central Committee
  87. MeSheWe
  88. Mother Nature Cambodia
  89. Myanmar Human Rights Alliances Network (MHRAN)
  90. National Campaign for Sustainable Development Nepal
  91. Never Again Coalition
  92. New School for Democracy
  93. No Business With Genocide
  94. Nonviolence International
  95. Odhikar
  96. Olof Palme International Center
  97. OutRight Action International
  98. PAX
  99. Pax Christi Aotearoa New Zealand
  100. Pax Christi Australia
  101. Pax Christi International
  102. Pax Christi Korea
  103. Pax Christi Philippines
  104. People’s Empowerment Foundation
  105. People’s Watch
  106. Philippine Alliance of Human Rights Advocates (PAHRA)
  107. Progressive Voice
  108. Prosecute; don’t perpetrate
  109. Public Association “Dignity”
  110. Pusat KOMAS
  111. Refugees International
  112. Restless Beings
  113. Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights
  114. Rohingya Association of Canada
  115. Rohingya Human Rights Initiative
  116. Rohingya Today
  117. Rohingya Women Education Initiative
  118. Rohingya Youth for Legal Action
  119. Smile Foundation
  120. Swedish Burma Committee
  121. Taiwan Association for Human Rights
  122. Taiwan Forever Association (台灣永社)
  123. Tampadipa Institute
  124. The Arakan Project
  125. The May 18 Memorial Foundation
  126. The PLAN: Public Legal Aid Network
  127. The Swedish Rohingya Association
  128. Uniting Church in Australia, Synod of Victoria and Tasmania
  129. US Campaign for Burma
  130. Viet Tan
  131. Vietnamese Women for Human Rights
  132. Voice of Rohingya
  133. Win Without War
  134. World Federalist Movement/Institute for Global Policy
  135. World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT)
  136. YMCA Mandalay
  137. Youth Resource Development Program (YRDP)

Download PDF in English.

Download PDF in Burmese.

Two dead as Myanmar police open fire on protesters in deadliest day since military coup

MANDALAY: Myanmar’s security forces fired live rounds and rubber bullets at protesters in the country’s second-largest city of Mandalay on Saturday (Feb 20), leaving at least two dead and about 30 injured.

Much of the country has been in an uproar since the military deposed civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi in a coup on Feb 1, with hundreds of thousands of demonstrators taking to the streets to protest against the junta.

On Saturday, hundreds of police and soldiers gathered at Yadanarbon shipyard in Mandalay, by the Irrawaddy river.

Their presence sparked fears among nearby residents that authorities would try to arrest workers for taking part in the anti-coup movement.

Banging pots and pans in what has become a signature gesture of defiance, protesters started yelling at the police to leave and throwing rocks at them.

But officers opened fire with live rounds, rubber bullets and slingshot balls, dispersing the alarmed protesters.

“Two people were killed,” said Hlaing Min Oo, the head of a Mandalay-based volunteer emergency rescue team, adding that one of the victims, who was shot in the head, was a teenager.

“About 30 others were injured – half of the injured people were shot with live rounds.”

The rest were wounded from rubber bullets and slingshots, he said.

Myanmar protest Feb 20 6
A wounded man is carried by a medical team after security forces opened fire on protesters during a demonstration against the military coup in Mandalay on Feb 20, 2021. (Photo: AFP)

The death toll was confirmed by another emergency worker on the scene, who declined to be named for fear of repercussions.

“One under-18 boy got shot in his head,” he told AFP.

A volunteer doctor said of the two deaths: “One shot in the head died at the spot. Another one died later with a bullet wound to the chest.”

READ: Singapore says use of lethal force in Myanmar against unarmed protesters ‘inexcusable’ after deaths reported

The man shot in the chest was identified by relatives as Thet Naing Win, a 36-year-old carpenter.

“They took away the body to the morgue. I cannot bring him back home. Although my husband died, I still have my son,” his wife, Thidar Hnin, told Reuters by phone. “I haven’t been involved in this movement yet but now I am going to … I am not scared now.”

State television MRTV’s evening news broadcast made no mention of the protests or casualties.

Police were not available for comment.

A protester receives treatment after being injured during the clashes
A protester receives treatment after being injured during the clashes in Myanmar. (Photo: AFP/STR)
Myanmar Protest Feb 20 4
Protesters hold images of detained Myanmar civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi during a demonstration against the military coup in Yangon on Feb 20, 2021. (Photo: AFP/Ye Aung Thu)

The protests against the coup that overthrew the government of veteran democracy campaigner Aung San Suu Kyi have shown no sign of dying down. Demonstrators are sceptical of the army’s promise to hold a new election and hand power to the winner.

Authorities have arrested hundreds of people since the putsch, many of them civil servants who had been boycotting work as part of a civil disobedience campaign.

READ: Rallies mourn anti-coup protester’s death as US urges Myanmar junta to yield power


Around the Mandalay shipyard and its surrounding neighbourhood, empty bullet cartridges were found on the ground, as well as slingshot ammunition including metal balls.

One woman received a head wound from a rubber bullet and emergency workers quickly administered first aid to her.

Myanmar protest Feb 20 7
A police officer aims a gun towards protesters during a demonstration against the military coup in Mandalay on Feb 20, 2021. (Photo: AFP)
Police throw projectiles towards protesters during the Mandalay disturbance
Police throw projectiles towards protesters during the Mandalay disturbance. (Photo: AFP/STR)

A Facebook video streamed live by a resident on the scene appeared to carry non-stop sounds of gunshots.

“They are shooting cruelly,” said the resident, who appeared to be taking shelter on a nearby construction site.

“We have to find a safer place.”

READ: Diverse Myanmar protesters united in opposition to coup

Since the nationwide protests started two weeks ago, authorities in some cities have deployed tear gas, water cannon and rubber bullets against demonstrators.

There have been isolated incidents of live rounds in the capital Naypyidaw.

An anti-coup protester who was shot in the head during a Feb 9 demonstration in Naypyidaw died on Friday.

Source: Reuters/AFP/dv

Channel  News Asia