February 1, 2021

The Day of the Coup

NAY PYI DAW – Early in the morning, soldiers from the Tatmadaw – the Burmese army – arrested State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and President U Win Myint in their official residences in the capital.

Other senior members and local politicians associated with the National League for Democracy (NLD) were detained in unknown locations. Myanmar’s new parliament was set to meet for its first session, two months after the ruling party had won the November 2020 elections in a landslide.

February 6, 2021

Millions in the Streets

YANGON – The vast majority of citizens, who had experienced a taste of freedom and democracy for the past decade, couldn’t accept the return of the military rule. Teachers, doctors, bank managers and engineers joined the Civil Disobedience Movement (CDM), and refused to work under the new Special Administrative Council (SAC) regime.

February 19, 2021

The First One Who Fell

NAY PYI DAW – As the revolutionary crowds became larger, the repression increased mercilessly. In the capital, 20-year-old Mya Thwe Thwe Khine died from a gunshot through her helmet, fired by a senior policeman. She is the first known victim of the anti-coup protest movement. After she was assassinated, policemen and soldiers unleashed…

February 28, 2021

Hunting the Media

PYAY // Located on the east bank of the Irrawaddy River, Pyay is a major economic hub of the Bago region, which is well-connected to Yangon via the first railway built in Burma during the British colonial era. There, the anti-coup protests usually started from the State University. On this morning, soldiers and policemen blocked the entrance to the campus where…

March 3, 2021

The Death of a Poet

MONYWA // Sitting on the banks of the Chindwin River in Upper Burma, the bustling town is the center of the government of Sagaing Region. In front of the statue of General Aung San, the father of ASSK, who is considered as the founder of the Burmese nation, the Monywa Township People’s Strike Steering Committee, formed by a dozen civil society organizations…

March 12, 2021

Urban Warfare

YANGON // No one will forget the fate of Kyal Sin ‘Angel’, a 19-year-old girl killed by police during a similar protest in Mandalay ten days earlier. Minutes before she fell, a photographer took a picture of her running from the frontline as she was wearing a black T-shirt with the message: ‘Everything will be OK’. Thousands of people came to her funeral…

March 21, 2021

Destroying the Opposition

SHWE TAUNG // A small town on the east bank of the Irrawaddy River near Pyay District, the city is a NLD stronghold and home to a large number of civil servants. The main protest leaders, including Kyaw Zeya, a local politician long engaged against military rule, and Hla Thwin, who served as chairman of the Shwe Taung Township Election Commission…

March 27, 2021

The Day of Shame

LASHIO // To mark the annual Armed Forces Day, the generals paraded in the capital, while their men killed more than 150 people around the country and arrested hundreds of others, on the bloodiest day since the coup.

The capital of Shan State, at the Chinese border, had already been under intense repression…

APRIL 13, 2021

Revolutionary New Year

NGAPALI BEACH // On the edge of Thandwe, an important port and the main agglomeration in South Rakhine State, lies Ngapali Beach. The beautiful spot is one of Myanmar’s most popular tourist destinations and gets particularly crowded during the Thingyan holiday. The five-day festival, which marks the beginning of the year in Theravada Buddhist nations…

MAY 5, 2021

People Defense Forces

UNDERGROUND – As pro-democracy protesters grew increasingly frustrated and desperate with means of peaceful resistance such as CDM and flash protests on motorbikes, the NUG made a clear break with the non-violence advocated by Aung San Suu Kyi’s NLD since its founding.

May 26, 2021

Back to School Bombing

SALIN – All 500 villages around Salin, a township in Magway Region, central Myanmar, elected NLD candidates in the 2020 General Election. The small farmers who lived in the area lost all hope for a better life after the coup. Open protests stopped after a brutal crackdown early March, which left an engineering student dead and ten people…

AUGUST 1, 2021

The Great Fragmentation

SITTWE // In a televised address, Myanmar’s junta leader declared himself prime minister and extended the state of emergency for two years. The Tatmadaw reorganized itself as a “caretaker” government, and announced that it will remain in power until August 2023, when, it claims, new elections will be held.

December 10, 2021

Silence As the Loudest War Cry

YANGON // To mark International Human Rights Day, Myanmar citizens made a point of staying at home to show their opposition against the military junta’s rule, a “Silent strike”, which turned most places in the country into ghost towns. Four days earlier, Aung San Suu Kyi, the 76-year-old de facto leader of Myanmar prior to the February military coup was tried in a closed court with no access to the public.
December 25, 2021

Bloody Christmas

MOSO VILLAGE, HPRUSO TOWNSHIP, KAYAH STATE // The Karenni National Defense Force (KNDF), an ethnic armed organization in the east of Myanmar, reported that 35 civilians, including women and children were captured by soldiers, put in trucks and burned to death.

FEBRUARY 1, 2022

The Return of the Darkness

Kyaukpadaung Township, Mandalay // One year after the coup d’Etat, many Burmese people stayed indoors as a form of protest against General Min Aung Hlaing’s seizure of absolute power. During this Silent Strike, Ko Aung Aung, a Mandalay resident, stood on his own in front of the local electricity office and set fire on himself.

From Ukraine to Myanmar : Reflections on crime against humanity

Laung Lone, Dawei // “Slava Ukraini!”, shouted a young Burmese revolutionary in a video clip aimed at the international community. Behind him, a group of like-minded people were holding signs with blue and yellow flags to show solidarity with the Ukrainians “Glory to Ukraine”.

MARCH 29, 2022

Exam Papers Gone in Smoke

HAKHA //  In Chin State’s capital Hakha, sacks of paper were scattered on the sun-burned grass of Yonetaung Valley. Just two days ahead of the nationwide university’s entrance exam, the helicopter that was bringing the Grade 10 exam papers crashed down

The Dangers of Thingyan

YANGON // The beginning of the annual New Year festivities has been marred by many protests and warnings this year. Thingyan is the traditional Burmese New Year celebration and a water play festival held in the month of Tagu, which corresponds to April, in most Southeast Asian countries. 

The Fuel Crisis

PWIN OO LWIN, MANDALAY REGION // Early morning, the rumor of a vast fuel shortage started spreading across the whole country and crowds of consumers took petrol stations by storm.

A Month of Unity for Burmese and Thai Workers

BANGKOK, THAILAND // As mass pro-democracy demonstrations have become too risky in Myanmar since March 2021, hundreds of Burmese migrant workers used the May Day strike tradition to take to the streets of downtown Bangkok. They protested against the coup d’Etat in their native country and requested dignified working conditions in their host country, where they are subjected to regular abuse and exploitation for decades. 

Junta Burning Upper Burma

Bin village, Sagaing REGION //A woman in her sixties, wearing a hat and a worn-out sweater, is weeping heavily as she is leaning against a wall. This picture went viral and attracted empathy from many people.

The Shadow of Death Penalty

INSEIN PRISON, YANGON  // At a press conference in Naypyidaw, SAC spokesman General Zaw Min Tun confirmed the death sentences of four men after some so-called journalists demanded the execution of the convicted prisoners: Ko Jimmy, Phyo Zeyar Thaw, Ko Hla Myo Aung and Ko Aung Thura Zaw.

Shan Women Lost Dignity and Safety

Pa-O Autonomous Region, Southern Shan State // After the coup, the question whether the life and dignity of women are less valuable than a bird is over-present. In Southern Shan State, a number of women have since been sexually assaulted, shot and killed and no one took responsibility except by giving some money. 

Remember Six Decades of Students Repression

YANGON // On July 7th, many protests happened around Myanmar to mark the 60th anniversary of the 1962 revolutionary student strike. The “Seven July” uprising was one of the first mass movement to oppose the military coup by General Ne Win’s junta.

To be continued