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
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
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
December 10, 2021
Silence As the Loudest War Cry
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.
Junta Gets Full Membership in the Eurasian Autocracies Gang
Pob Pra District, THAILAND // In this remote village at the Thai-Myanmar border, a model-sized blue Mig-29 aircraft led the cortege for Asahna Bucha Buddhist ceremony with little boys as part of a parade around their school.
UNDERGROUND, IN EXILE // After the military coup, journalists were among the first to be hunted down along with opposition politicians, social workers and activists. In 2021, Burma became the country that imprisons the most journalists after China. Dozens of reporters have been arrested and four have been killed by the SAC.
We remember our colleagues who lost their life or their freedom while fulfilling their mission of public information.
COX BAZAR, BANGLADESH // A collective of Rohingya photographers living in the Kuputalong-Balukhali refugee camp, published their first photography magazine. Five years since the start of the genocidal campaign against the formerly Rakhine-based Muslim community, key members of the team speak about their motivations, challenges and ambitions.
YANGON // Before the coup, it was pretty safe to go out in the late evenings in Yangon and even to walk around the night markets. Since the early days of the military takeover, violent crimes of theft and robbery have been happening every day.
The Junta’s war on children
LAT YET KONE, SAGAING REGION // Early afternoon, the Burmese army intentionally attacked a school and a village in Depayin Township using machine guns and launchers, killing two dozen people, half of them children.
RIVER MOEI, Burma-Thailand border // The endless escape of Myanmar people out of their land is worsening since the military coup of 2021. As realpolitik and national security issues topple humanitarian concerns, tragedies along the river marking the border between Thailand and Myanmar keep unfolding.
Airstrikes leave open wounds in the heart of Kachinland
KACHIN STATE // A targeted airstrike during a concert held by the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO) for its 62 years anniversary in A Nang Pa killed dozens of people and traumatized the state. Kachin people will always remember this epochal traumatic event which happened on a clear October night in the context of the endemic war engulfing the state.
BANGKOK, THAILAND // Pot lids and umbrellas, symbols of resistance in Myanmar, appeared in front of Thailand’s Prime Minister’s Office and United Nations headquarters as political leaders from the region gathered in the capital to discuss free trade zones and other economic issues.
The women fighting on the eastern frontline
MYAWADDY, KAREN STATE // In the afternoon, Naw Eh Moo, 28, was carrying rations in a vehicle to the frontline on the Myawaddy-Wal Lay highway when her logistics team was ambushed by Burmese army soldiers. Her team supplied Cobra troops with uniforms, equipment and medicines. She leaves a five-year old daughter behind and many friends in mourning.
DECEMBER 16, 2022
WASHINGTON, USA // After many years of attempting to pass a version of the “Burma Unified through Rigorous Military Accountability Act of 2022” (as known as BURMA ACT), both houses of the U.S. Congress have finally passed the bill. This welcomed development comes after multiple failed attempts in 2019 and 2021.
JANUARY 04, 2023
No Mercy and No Media for Political Prisoners in Rakhine
SITTWE, RAKHINE STATE //Bordering the Bay of Bengal in western Myanmar, Rakhine or Arakan state has been a major center of resistance to the junta military forces. The junta’s recent actions risk provoking the restarting of an active conflict. Although the SAC released more than 7000 prisoners for Independence Day across Myanmar, not a single political prisoner from Rakhine was included.
JANUARY 15, 2023
CHAN THAR, SAGAING REGION // “In the early morning, soldiers burned down churches, monasteries, orphanages, the public hall, and public schools. They slept at the school and some houses the night before and in the morning they burned it all down. The military already burned down the village four times. Only 14 houses are left and a hundred were gone in the last raid.” said a local resident from Ye Oo Township. The oldest Burmese Catholic Church, dating from 1894, has also been destroyed.
JANUARY 21, 2023
Energy, Money, and Security: for whom?
ANDAMAN SEA, SOUTHERN MYANMAR // 60 kilometres offshore south of Myanmar lies Yadana, the main natural gas field of the country. Natural gas sources have become a hotspot of geopolitical involvement in the ongoing political upheaval inside Myanmar as oil and gas rank as the top profit-making businesses for the coup-making military junta.
JANUARY 24, 2023
YANGON // Two years after the coup, the Myanmar youth feel despondent about their future. One promising way abroad for them is relocating to other Asian countries such as Japan and South Korea.
FEBRUARY 20, 2023
After two years of darkness, a Sagaing village goes up in flames
SAGAING REGION // Many people in Myanmar are losing access to electricity, a recurring fact throughout the country’s tumultuous history. Since it seized power in February 2021, the military junta has cut off internet connections and electricity lines on purpose to extract concessions from a population disgruntled by the national situation.
MARCH 8, 2023
CHIANG MAI // On International Women’s Day, the town in the north of Thailand hosted the first Myanmar’s Women’s summit and women and their allies took the streets of Old Town.
MAY 1 , 2023
Workers Demand Labor Rights For All In Thailand
BANGKOK & CHIANG MAI // To mark International Workers’ Day, hundreds of migrant workers from Myanmar marched in the streets along with Thai activists in a show of unity. To this day, migrant workers cannot form a union under Thai law.
MAY 15, 2023
BANGKOK // In the week preceding the national elections, our team has asked Thai and Myanmar workers and activists about their concerns and aspirations as their respective countries share similar political issues, as well as the threats looming on their unified movement.
JULY 4 , 2023
Myanmar diaspora hopes for a new dawn as Thailand votes to shed its green uniform
BANGKOK // The Thai Parliament is expected to form a new civilian government. The majority of Thai citizens as well as Myanmar people who took shelter in the neighboring country are hoping for a new era. However, the new government will have to confront the massive challenges posed by the Myanmar military.
JULY 8, 2023
YANGON // Because of the military administration lack of technology and management skills to address the terrible electricity shortage across the country, people can’t work, communicate or sleep and urban life is severely disrupted.
Black market solutions have emerged, but the burden of paying monthly electricity bills without regular access to power remains a mandatory responsibility for urban dwellers, as most of the energy produced is exported in neighboring countries.
To be continued