Myanmar: Violence escalated in Myanmar as the country's security forces opened fire on protesters who were attending the funeral of a student Thae Maung Maung (20).
The young man was among the more than a hundred people killed by the country's security forces on Saturday (March 27).
Maung was laid to rest on Sunday amid protests. Maung was reportedly a member of the All Burma Federation of Student Union. The student union has a long-standing history of supporting pro-democracy movements in the country.
It was reported by the local media as the bloodiest day since the Myanmar Coup which took place on February 1st, 2021.
Several of those killed were bystanders and children under 16, including eleven-year-old Aye Myat Thu, who was shot dead in the southeastern city of Mawlamyine, according to local media.
Among those who lost their lives in Saturday's incident were Shwe Myint (36) and Sai Wai Yan (13) who were shot dead by security forces.
The killings have brought Myanmar under the scrutiny of international nations. The country's security forces have repeatedly fired into crowds of peaceful protesters. The number of killings since the coup is now more than 420, according to multiple counts.
The escalating violence claimed the lives of at least 114 people on Saturday (March 27th).
This has prompted the UN Human Rights expert to accuse the Junta of committing mass murder and also to criticize the international community for not doing enough to stop it.
Myanmar's military celebrated Armed Forces Day with parades and speeches on Saturday, despite the growing toll and threats amid protests, demanding that the democratically-elected government of former de facto leader Aung Sang Suu Kyi is returned to power. The Army has had her under house arrest since February 1. The killings and crackdown continued on Saturday claiming the lives of many during the parade in the country's capital, Naypyitaw.
As per reports in the local media, many people attending the funerals were arrested. Some of the funerals that were held on Sunday became an opportunity for the protesters to project resistance to the junta. And that resulted in some of them being shot by junta's troops.
US President Joe Biden also condemned the violence and threatened to impose more sanctions on the country.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres also condemned the killings of civilians, including children.
The Defence Chiefs from around 12 countries also condemned Myanmar's military's violence against peaceful protesters. The countries include the US, the UK, Germany, Italy, Denmark, Greece, the Netherlands, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, and Japan.
Now, as tensions rise, the leaders who resisted the coup have sought the General Strike Committee of Nationalities (GSCN), one of the main protest groups, in an open letter posted on Facebook “to collectively protect the people, youths, women, children and elders” who opposed the military rule.
The leaders have also asked several other groups to join them as allies. However, so far the ethnic armed groups have only committed to providing protection to protesters in areas they control.