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  • D. Brit

Myanmar Frees Hundreds of Anti-Coup Protesters

What Happened:

  • On Wednesday, Myanmar's military government released hundreds of anti-coup protesters from imprisonment, a rare conciliatory gesture from the military. The majority of those released were students that were detained at a protest on March 3.

  • They also released a journalist for the Associated Press, Thein Zaw, who was arrested last month while covering an anti-coup protest.

  • Anti-coup demonstrations have been ongoing in Myanmar for several weeks since the military staged a coup on Feb 1 and arrested the democratically elected officials. Police and military response has become increasingly violent and often lethal over the last several weeks as they try to stamp out all opposition.

  • With the increase in violent responses at public protests, protesters are now asking people to stay at home in a "silent protest" to the junta's control.

  • The protesters do not wish to return to military rule and demand the release and return to power for the democratically elected officials.

  • The democratically elected leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, has been under house arrest since the coup.

  • The military claims that there was widespread fraud in the election and uses that as justification for the coup.

  • Myanmar, which spent five decades under military rule, had recently undergone a democratic transition and elected Aung San Suu Kyi as leader as well as given the majority of the seats in parliament to Kyi's National League for Democracy Party.

  • Other nations, including the US, have condemned the coup saying that the outcome of the recent elections should be respected. President Biden also placed sanctions on Myanmar.

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