Freedom Memoirs – Day 74

Millions of Myanmar people have been protesting in many themes and forms since the first week of February. Some are outside marching down the streets, chanting protest songs. Some are inside beating pots and pans, not showing up at work, boycotting military’s businesses. Despite what the coup leaders said, the whole world knows majority of the population is against dictatorship and showing it on day-to-day basis. Arguably this has been one of the most consistent movement in the country’s recent history. And although such activities are not organized or led by an individual figure, some of the names have stood out and taken place in people’s hearts. And as we fear for their safety, we often downplay the involvement of those brave souls.

This afternoon, Wai Moe Naing, a prominent protest leader who was marching the streets of Monywa every single day, was violently abducted by armed thugs. A video footage showed that a group of protesters led by Wai Moe Naing were performing the motorbike strike rally around the city and suddenly a private vehicle appeared from the opposite direction and crashed onto Wai Moe Naing’s motorbike. Eye witnesses said the vehicle was carrying armed thugs and they beat him up before they took him away. The incident almost felt like a scene out of a gangster movie and the netizens rushed on social media platforms to inform the whole world what happened. International press quickly picked up the news and Swedish Embassy also said that it was following his case and urged that all detainees be allowed proper health care and their human rights be respected. It was a violation of basic human rights for abducting someone who is peacefully protesting, not to mention taking him the way they did.

However, it was not the only lawless act terrorist army managed to pull off today. Daw Myo Aye, the director of Solidarity Trade Union of Myanmar (STUM) was forcefully taken away from her office today according to reports. She is a prominent figure among NGO networks as her career focused on working for the benefits of workers/labours, and we cannot confirm why she was taken. We also heard reports that terrorist soldiers arrested a famous singer Po Po and an experienced actor Zin Wine for violating 505A of Penal Code, the coup leaders’ favourite tactic of silencing the public.

Moreover, this morning as early as 9am, strike of medical family in Mandalay was cracked down by terrorist soldiers during which at least twenty people were abducted. Eyewitnesses said that terrorists were randomly shooting until 10am, then they went into nearby streets and tried to enter some houses hoping they would find protesters in hiding. Soon, armed thugs arrived at Sule Mosque compound in Mahar Aung Myay Township and continued indiscriminate shooting which killed a man and wounded four others including a disabled person. To enter a religious compound and kill people during Ramadan in such manner is just outrageous. While we scratch our heads, thugs also abducted five people including two children as if killing one innocent man was not enough.

We also heard a tragic incident in Pathein that took place on 13 April and did not make the news immediately due to internet shutdown. A former Union Election Commission secretary was brought to the office to clarify voting results, apparently, he fell down stairs and passed away on the spot according to the new members of the office. People find that suspicious, to say the least.  

And such fascist acts still don’t intimidate people as thousands across the country go out and protest in various themes on the third day of Thingyan. If we just copy the same paragraph from our previous entries about the towns and the regions that have streets full of demonstrators, we might not be too far off, we might even miss a few. Villages, townships, cities from north to south are standing up and protesting against the coup every single day.

In the other news, CRPH has introduced a new Facebook page called Public Voice Television (PVTV) which will serve as a broadcasting channel for announcing upcoming National Unity Government-NUG news and sharing people’s voices during this spring revolution. And some supporters even remarked that it didn’t come soon enough!

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