Police in Myanmar have opened fire on protesters in several cities with live rounds, witnesses and local media reported, killing at least nine people in the worst bloodshed since 18 were killed on Sunday.
The people were killed in separate protests in different cities, including Mandalay and Yangon. The videos and pictures on social media showed soldiers threatening and brutally beating people working for medical aid after forcing them out of the ambulance.
The soldiers have been using tear gas, stun guns grenades and rubber bullets as well to disperse the protesters but they have been defying the military and returning to the streets every day to protest against the 1 February military coup.
Student activist Moe Myint Hein, 25, who was wounded in the leg, said “they opened fire on us with live bullets. One was killed, he’s young, a teenage boy, shot in the head,” reported Reuters news agency.
This comes even as the foreign ministers from Southeast Asian neighbours, who met via video conference on Tuesday, failed to solve the crisis.
Some of the neighbouring countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Singapore have been demanding that Myanmar’s military release Aung San Suu Kyi and other political leaders who were detained after the coup.
Since then, protests have continued across Myanmar despite the use of lethal force by security forces. On 28 February, according to reports, at least 18 people were killed while 30 were injured.
In addition, many protesters have been injured in the violence since the protests started and hundreds of others have been arrested.
Salai Lian, an activist in Chin State, said: “We’re aiming to show that no one in this country wants dictatorship.”
Additional reporting by agencies