Security Forces Crackdown On Protests Across Kachin State
By Network Media Group
Thursday, March 4, 2021
Security forces attacked protesters in Burma’s Kachin State yesterday, March 3, with slingshots, teargas and stun bombs, injuring participants in Myitkyina and Hpakant town.
In Myitkyina, the Kachin Peace-talk Creation Group (PCG) asked people not to block the street and for the protest to disperse.
According to a participant, PCG told them not to throw stones at police. However, the youth explained that they didn’t attack them with stones and only used them to block the road after security forces brutally attacked their peaceful demonstration.
To stop police and soldiers in the Kachin State capital, residents erected make-shift barricades with bamboo, wood and stones at Myae Myint, Yuzana and Awng Nan wards.
“Because we don’t feel safe we must block the streets,” said another unnamed demonstrator. The protest ended at noontime but the security forces kept advancing on protesters, the anonymous source told NMG.
Police and soldiers also pelted demonstrators who assembled at the Manaw Sports Ground in Myitkyina with slingshots and teargas. During the assault, some got hurt and police confiscated motorbikes, chairs and other items from the site of the protest.
Further northwest, in Hpakant, protesters were injured after being attacked.
A man who requested anonymity told NMG security forces surrounded a demonstration near a public park downtown, firing rubber bullets and tear gas. “I think at least 10 people received injuries, but I can’t provide the exact numbers.”
Demonstrations in Myitkyina and Hpakant have been breaking out since February 8, about a week after the military staged a coup. Despite the violent crackdown and arrests, protesters have vowed to continue until power is restored to the democratic government and all detainees are freed.
After authorities tried to shutdown previous demonstrations in Putao, protesters took to their motorbikes during a rally yesterday through the remote town in northern Kachin State. At times, security forces attempted to prevent the rally from proceeding.