Human rights activists who support anti-military protests and condemn the detention of lawmakers elected in Myanmar’s November polls are determined to continue their struggle on the ground and online until democracy is restored and the civil government returns to power.
Myanmar’s army seized power on Feb. 1, toppling the elected government of Aung San Suu Kyi and putting an end to the country’s brief experience of democracy.
In the ongoing anti-coup protests that started on Feb. 6 and have continued for more than a month in many cities and towns of the country, opponents of the coup demand the release of elected members of the deposed government and the resignation of the military junta.
Despite the fact that security forces have killed at least 65 people as a result of their harsh intervention in the protests, large crowds continue to gather in Myanmar.
Keren Khin, a Yangon-based online activist, told Anadolu Agency that she has been sharing details about anti-coup rallies and demonstrations on social media on a regular basis since the protests started.
“As activists, some of us organize the protests on the ground, while some of us support the struggle over the internet. I am also one of the hundreds of activists trying to get the protesters’ voices heard around the world,” Khin said.
“Military vehicles are constantly passing through the neighborhood where my house is located. They sometimes shoot the buildings randomly in order to scare us,” she added.
Khin said she spends 16 hours a day spreading information on social media, “except for eight hours of internet blackout.”
“As an online activist, I’ll never stop protesting regardless of the situation because social media is the only way to tell the world about what’s happening here,” Khin said, adding that she “can’t even think of resting” because there are not many accounts on social media exposing the realities.
Khin called the military junta “terrorists” for using violent tactics to deal with protesters, and urged the international community to intervene because the country is in humanitarian crisis.
‘Turkey’s stance inspires people of Myanmar’
Thinzar Shunlei Yi, another human rights activist who joined the protests on the ground, said she has witnessed “terrible scenes” during the anti-coup rallies in Yangon.
“Situation is getting worse. It was more like a massacre, a daily slaughter by security forces on unarmed protesters,” Yi said.
She vowed that demonstrations will continue on the streets as the anti-coup rallies put “daily pressure” on the military junta.
“After 30 days of consecutive demonstrations, it is not just anti-coup protests, but now it’s already a revolution for a better future,” she said.
Yi stressed that the resistance of the Turkish people against the 2016 defeated coup gave “great inspiration” to the people of Myanmar. She was referring to the July 15, 2016 coup bid in Turkey, which was orchestrated by the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) and its US-based leader Fetullah Gulen, and left 251 people martyred and 2,734 injured.
“We hope that Turkey and the international community will continue to support our struggle and stand in solidarity with us,” she said.
*Writing by Jeyhun Aliyev in Ankara
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