Freedom Memoirs – Day 89

Not a day goes by without a protest against the illegal coup in Myanmar. People have not taken a day off even the day reaches 89 under the illegal coup. Yangon youth striked again today under the heavy rain and deafening thunders. Many Yangon townships strategized in flashmob as seen in Latha, Sanchaung, South Dagon, North Dagon, Hlaing, Thingangyun, Mingalar Taung Nyunt and Yankin. Creative rallies and people marches are still Myanmar’s everyday scene across the country from northern Kachin state to the deep south, Tanintharyi region.

Junta announced extension of unilateral ceasefire today until the end of May although the military launched air attacks repeatedly on Kachin and Karen states. This announcement came after the military lost a significant number of its bases to KIA and KNU despite its offensive attacks both on land and from air. KNU claimed territory, planting a Karen nationality flag, near Thai-Burma border as they successfully occupied three bases of the military. 

Early this morning today, KIA spokesperson Naw Bu said the military launched airstrikes against KIA’s battalion 25 located in Momauk, Kachin State. It has been six days that the junta’s forces have started launching airstrikes against the battalion. In the south, the number of clashes between KNU and junta’s forces reached 200 within two months leading thousands of Karen civilians to take refuge in the forest and to flee to Thailand. Many former urban protestors have now joined the training at the border given by the EAOs, and Gen-Z announced in a video that the group along with the members of KNU battalion 1 ambushed and killed 11 members of the junta’s forces. They also declared they would come and reclaim their towns back in Mon state with KNU battalion 1. It seems Myanmar’s armed struggle has taken a stronghold again in 2021, just like it did after the 1988 uprising.

Non-violent movement has not stopped its momentum on the other hand despite threats and attacks. Nearly into three months, Myanmar civil servants on strike have not given up, and are committed to continue their civil disobedience movement (CDM). More than 200 striking staff members at the Myanmar Oriental Bank (MOB) were fired without advance notice, only receiving a letter that said they were dismissed due to violations of the bank’s regulations. The bank’s employees have joined CDM since February aiming to topple the military coup. Many civil servants continue to face threats of dismissal from work and detention by joining CDM. Military is unable to run the country without participation of its workforce. 

Civilians’ general boycott has also been effective. Today, Myanmar monthly lottery dropped its highest price off the chart of this month’s (May) draw replacing it with a much lower price. The draw has been postponed twice due to the boycott. Earlier, Frontier Myanmar reported that the boycott of Myanmar beer has wiped US$ 1 billion off the value of its military-linked parent company. A day ago, the National Unity Government (NUG) also asked the public to continue with the boycott of military-owned businesses. We are committed to continue with our Buu-Campaign (No campaign), a campaign of social and economic sabotage. As CDM teachers are being forced to go to schools and teach, it has become a duty of students to say ‘NO’ to the junta’s operated schools. One placard held by students in their ‘No school under the military campaign’ said, ‘The military forces are in schools (referring to forces taken schools as their base in town), the students are in jail”.

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