02/13/2021 Myanmar (International Christian Concern) – It has been almost two weeks since the Tatmadaw (Burmese Army) staged a coup and abducted the country’s State Counsellor, President, and other senior officials. The people of Myanmar, regardless of their faith, took to the streets to express their anger and demand the release of their leaders.
Regardless of their faith — Burmese Buddhists, Christians, Muslims and Hindus — have rallied in peaceful anti-coup protests nationwide.
Despite Cardinal Charles Bo’s recent call to refrain from participating in the protests with Catholic symbols, priests, nuns, and seminarians from places including Mandalay, Pathein and Myitkyina displayed their solidarity with the people of Myanmar by holding placards calling for democracy.
According to Asia News, 11 monks from the Buddhist monastery of Pegu, 80 km north-east of Yangon, issued an open letter on February 11 in which they urge the population to hold high “the light of good” and dharma, and to reject “the path of evil”, which drags the country into darkness and destruction.
ChristianityToday also reports that Michael Koko Maung, the leader of a national network of church planters, said, “On the ground, our brothers and sisters [believers] will continue their movement of peaceful civil disobedience, the drumming of pots and pans, peaceful mass marching demonstrations, and the chants of condemnation to the military. Abroad, we will let the world know that we are fighting back.”
Meanwhile, the military junta has escalated its suppression of the people’s voices. They have begun to use water cannon and rubber bullets against the weaponless crowd. They also released 23,000 prisoners allegedly to make more room for arrests and detention.
The U.S. and the U.K. plan to impose sanctions on the Tatmadaw leaders in the hope that they would release Aung San Suu Kyi and respect the country’s democracy. The UN Human Rights Council also adopted a resolution calling for the release of the country’s civilian leader.