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  • now Myanmar's military are calling it anarchy.

  • But demonstrators have turned out in greater numbers than before in protest against the military coup of three weeks ago.

  • And they do so in defiance of a clear threat issued on the state run TV channel, which declared that protesters will suffer the loss of life if they continued in what an Army statement called the path of confrontation from neighboring Thailand, Jonathan Head reports, there is no party or institution behind this movement.

  • No central leadership, either.

  • Just hundreds of thousands of people organized through communities and professions into a remarkably coordinated show of opposition.

  • The military government is trying to present these protests.

  • Is the work of a few agitators hoodwinking young people into joining Today's general strike set out to prove that wrong.

  • The crowds were big in Yangon, Aunt in the capital nip it'll where they faced a formidable wall of police moving down the capital's famously oversized highways.

  • But these rallies were replicated in every corner of Myanmar, in the northern state of Cochin to Lashio in Shan state and the ancient temples of began.

  • This was Tongi, and in the south, the streets of Dawei packed with people and color.

  • In most places, the shops and markets were closed.

  • Myanmar's economic life is being badly disrupted, a price many people say they're willing to pay.

  • Today is a day for countrywide protests.

  • We don't want to stay under the control of a military dictatorship, So we came here to join the protest.

  • Regardless of the salaries we make, nothing will happen to me if my salary is cut.

  • But if we stay under the control of a military dictatorship, we will become their slaves.

  • Three weeks after the coup, public anger is still burning bright in Myanmar.

  • The generals who seized power have little popular support.

  • Threadbare legitimacy on their authority is being challenged every day on the streets.

  • All they have is their guns.

  • At some point they'll have to decide how far they're prepared to use them against so many of their own people.

  • Jonathan Head, BBC News Bangkok Well, I spoken directly to the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, about the situation in Myanmar.

  • He said There's a need for a united international voice to condemn the actions of the hunter.

  • But he said the pressure may take time to build on For now, the targeted sanctions is the main form of action from the United States.

  • That coup triggered sanctions from the United States, vory targeted and focused on the perpetrators of the coup and, uh, companies that support them.

  • We've been working overtime thio work with other countries, uh, to condemn the actions of the military, to call on it, to restore power to the democratically elected government, to release political prisoners from jail, and certainly not to use violence against those standing up for their democratic rights.

  • Um, and we'll see where that goes.

  • But, uh, pressure takes time, uh, to be felt to be exerted on.

  • Uh, my hope is that as more and more countries come together in making clear that this is not acceptable, we will see a change from, uh from the military.

  • But the hard reality is that democratic transition has been interrupted against the will of the people of Myanmar, and the international community needs to speak clearly with one voice that that's not acceptable.

  • That was US Secretary of State Antony Blinken there.

  • Let's hear from a student organizer in Yangon who's being out in the streets protesting today.

  • He says they'll continue to rally and call for the release of their democratically elected government despite heavy handed threats from the military.

  • We're not worrying about their threats, and that's why we're still on the street.

  • We worry more about the future.

  • We just enter the military region.

  • I'm afraid off.

  • Uh, you know more about our future under the military regime, not the temporal threats on strikes and protests were just looking at the images off the protests.

  • There are tens of thousands of people on the streets.

  • It's incredibly organized.

  • Thes protests.

  • How you mobilizing people, given the Internet shutdown at first on the first day off, You know the cub, we communicate each other person to person, want the Internet has been shut down.

  • I mean, most of the activists organizations during unions and trade unions, you know, already known each other just to organize the meetings.

  • So that's how we organized during the five days of the code.

  • But you know, after the after the first tracks on the February on innuendo, you know, the people organize themselves and the young, especially the young people, you know, that's amazing, organized themselves on the streets and, you know, they marching and they protesting Asian everyday.

  • Their stuff, you know, without any central leadership and any you know any any, you know, organizational leadership.

  • We were just listening to the U.

  • S.

  • Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who says that for now it's the method that they would continue to use is sanctions and pressure on the generals.

  • Do you think the international community is listening to you?

  • I think I think, Yeah, Yeah.

  • I mean, uh, at the same time, I saw the sanctions starting out.

  • And so the international concern about um, yeah, yeah.

  • Especially the China and Russia.

  • I mean, that they're still communicating.

  • I mean, they're still dealing with military council, So Yeah, that's that's the, you know, the major challenges for us.

  • That was a student demonstrator.

now Myanmar's military are calling it anarchy.

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Huge crowds defy army warning in Myanmar strike - BBC News

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    林宜悉 posted on 2021/02/22
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