When it rained last night, many of us were tucked in decent beds but we were constantly reminded of Kayin people who were fleeing from Myanmar military’s attacks and taking refuge in the woods. They are in need of shelters and humanitarian aids which can be provided via Thai border. Initially, news reports said that Thai authorities did not grant access to the aids, but later today Karen Information Center (KIC) reported that Thai authorities made ONE TIME approval for the transport of humanitarian aids because civil societies in Thailand tried to put pressure. However, this humanitarian crisis needs constant support. With the junta’s official announcement to fight Restoration Council of Shan State (RCSS), more civilians will have to leave their homes and they will most likely end up in Myanmar-Thai border areas. In this battle between justice and injustice, we sincerely hope Thai authorities stand on the side of justice.
Our nights were continued to be harassed by the terrorist soldiers. Around 9 pm in Mandalay, a young woman on a motorbike was shot by the soldiers and fell. The soldiers took photo of the girl and left her there to die. Nobody dared to help her since the soldiers could ambush the medic team. Prior to the incident, junta’s soldiers abducted a civilian, and when they found tattoos of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi image and 22222 strike on his body, the sadistic soldiers burned his tattoos and destroyed. Forget about violations of human rights. We do not even own our bodies anymore.
With the rain last night, Padauk flowers, a symbol of Myanmar New Year Water Festival, blossomed in the morning which meant Padauk flower strike for today. It rained almost entire day in lower Myanmar but that did not stop the anti-coup protesters. We saw protesters in the rain in Yangon and Bago, marching with raincoats and umbrellas, wearing Padauk flowers. A group of protesters in Yangon also burned the flag of China since the big neighbouring country vetoed the decision to take action against the coup leaders at the last UN Security Council. Nationwide, the protests did not slow down – from Hpakant in Kachin State in the North, Mandalay, Myingyan, and Monywa in the Central to Dawei in Taninthayi Region in the South. At 5 pm today, the public participated in the Clapping Strike for five minutes to honour and show support to frontline protesters, civilians-led defense teams, and ethnic armed organisations such as KNU, KIA. We are so grateful for our courages people.
Yesterday, basic education teachers from Sinku Township, 40 miles away from Mandalay, organised a marching protest but with mobile internet shutdown, they were unable to share their photos. So today, the teachers travelled to Mandalay and shared photos their marching protest both on foot and with motorbikes, holding protest signs which read “We support CRPH” and “We Need R2P” on Facebook. Determination and perseverance of Myanmar people is so powerful that the junta’s desperate effort in shutting down the internet went in vain.
Just like ever-accelerating our anti-coup spirit, the junta’s forces do not slow down their barbaric activities too. In early morning, six people including three young children were abducted by the junta’s forces because a family member was issued warrant for arrest and is in hiding. In Pinlaebu Township in Sagaing region, one protester died and two were injured as the terrorist soldiers attacked the peaceful protesters.
The Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP) reports that 564 people, including 47 children, have been killed. The number could be more because it is extremely difficult to get information from the rural areas at this point. As of writing this, the rain hasn’t stopped, and we keep worrying for those fleeing in the rain. We wish the rain washes away the evil junta. For now, It’s a wishful thinking but we don’t lose hope. We will eventually remove this blood-thirsty, power-hungry institution for good. Let’s stay strong and hopeful until then.