Views of shielded vehicles in Myanmar’s biggest city and an internet shutdown increased political pressures after large numbers of people around the country ridiculed commands against protests to oppose the military’s capture of power. Public concern has now been raised for the past several nights by what many charges is the military’s administration of offenders discharged from prison to carry out night-time disturbance and stir up fear.
Representatives from the US and Canada and 12 European countries named on Myanmar’s security forces to abstain from rampage against those opposing the overthrow of their lawful government. They denounced the detentions of political leaders and activists as well as the military’s intervention with communications.“We support the people of Myanmar in their quest for democracy, freedom, peace, and prosperity, they said in a joint statement issued late Sunday night. The world is watching.”
The military captured control on Feb. 1, arresting the country’s elected leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, and members of her government and preventing newly elected legislators from starting a new session of Parliament. The junta, directed by Senior Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, said it was compelled to move in because the government declined to properly examine charges of cheat in last year’s election, which Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy party won. The state election commission discovered no proof to substantiate the charges.
There was no clear word about why armored personnel carriers crossed the roads of Yangon in broad daylight Sunday, moving their way through busy traffic. As night came, there were videos and other statements on social media of the flow of trucks crowded with soldiers, and in the central city of Mandalay as well. A law that seems to be from the Ministry of Transport and Communications asked mobile phone service providers to shut down internet links from 1 a.m. to 9 a.m. Monday. It advertised extensively on social media, as did a notification said to be from service provider Oredoo Myanmar containing the same features. Several users reached through other means verified that way through Myanmar’s broadband and mobile services were cut as scheduled.
Suu Kyi remains under house arrest, but a remand status maintaining her on a minor assessment of holding unregistered foreign walkie-talkies departs Monday and a court in the capital, Naypyitaw, is assumed to take action on her case. Her freedom is a major requirement of the protest movement. Khin Maung Zaw, a lawyer asked by Suu Kyi’s party to represent her, said he was unsure if she would have a court appearance Monday, and it could be postponed by a day. He has not been able to make a connection with Suu Kyi.
There is also the chance that a young woman who was shot during a protest last week, also in Naypyitaw, will be notified legally dead. She has been on life care in a hospital in the capital, and informal memorial assistance was taken for her Sunday at protests in Yangon and Mandalay, the country’s two biggest cities. Large demonstrations were also kept in Naypyitaw and far-flung corners of the country controlled by ethnic minorities. Resistance also occurred in cyberspace, as a group describing itself BrotherHood of Myanmar Hackers damaged the government’s Myanmar Digital News website, restoring content on its home page with words and pictures against the military takeover.
Radicals in Yangon again revived outside the Chinese and U.S. embassies. They attack Beijing for propping up the military administration and praise Washington’s actions authorizing the military. There were disseminated calls on Twitter for armed invasion by the United States. Other demonstrators took signs urging people to boycott businesses connected to the military. Eight days of street demonstrations are assessed to have brought hundreds of thousands of people to the streets notwithstanding the threat of six months’ confinement for infringing an order forbidding gatherings of five or more people. The same law commands an 8 p.m. to 4 a.m. curfew.
Sunday’s activism occurred after the junta announced a new order suspending certain basic civil freedom. The order, announced late Saturday and proclaimed Sunday in state newspapers, excludes provisions in enduring law on security and privacy protection, letting the authorities move out searches and make captures without court permits. It also enables the capture of electronic and other communications without a warrant and allows the arrest of detainees for more than 24 hours without court approval.
Civil servants have been very effective in the demonstrations, and social media postings on Sunday showed that state railway workers have connected them, with some unconfirmed allegations that they have gone on strike. The public at large has been terrified since the government last week announced an amnesty that directed to the liberation of more than 23,000 prisoners. There are many demands on social media that some have been hired by the officials to conduct out violent actions at night in residential areas to extend panic, especially by placing fires. Some areas have reacted by placing up their own neighborhood awareness groups.