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A protester walks in a street full of water bags to be used against tear gas, during an anti-coup protest at Hledan junction in Yangon, Myanmar, March 14, 2021. Source: Reuters/Stringer.
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  • Security forces killed at least 22 anti-coup protestors in the poor, industrial suburb of Hlaingthaya in Yangon on Sunday after several Chinese factories in the area were set ablaze
  • Another 16 people were killed elsewhere in Myanmar, including one police officer, making it the bloodiest day since the military coup began on February 1
  • Military-run Myawadday television said security forces responded after four garment factories and a fertiliser plant were set on fire
  • No group has yet claimed responsibility for burning the factories
  • The latest casualties bring the death toll from the protests to 126, with more than 2150 people detained as of Saturday

Security forces killed at least 22 anti-coup protestors in the poor, industrial suburb of Hlaingthaya in Yangon on Sunday after several Chinese factories in the area were set ablaze.

Another 16 people were killed elsewhere in Myanmar, including one police officer, making it the bloodiest day since the military coup began on February 1, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP).

The Chinese embassy said many staff members were injured and trapped in the attacks on the garment factories by as-yet unidentified assailants, and called on Myanmar to protect its citizens and property.

Local media said security forces opened fire on protestors as plumes of smoke rose from the industrial area that is home to migrants from across the country.

“It was horrible. People were shot before my eyes. It will never leave my memory,” said one photojournalist who did not want to be named.

Military-run Myawadday television said security forces responded after four garment factories and a fertiliser plant were set on fire and around 2000 people had prevented fire engines from reaching them.

“The perpetrators, attackers, enemies of the people of Myanmar, the evil SAC (State Administrative Council) will be held accountable for every drop of blood that shed,” said Doctor Sasa, a representative of elected lawmakers from Aung San Suu Kyi’s ousted National League for Democracy Party.

No group has yet claimed responsibility for burning the factories.

The United Nations Special Envoy for Myanmar condemned what she called the “ongoing brutality.”

Christine Schraner Burgener said she had “personally heard from contacts in Myanmar heartbreaking accounts of killings, mistreatment of demonstrators and torture of prisoners over the weekend.”

The military said it took power after its accusations of fraud in the November 8 election won by Suu Kyi’s party were rejected by the electoral commission, and has promised to hold a new election but has not set a date.

The AAPP said the latest casualties bring the death toll from the protests to 126, with more than 2150 people detained as of Saturday.

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