ASIA/MYANMAR – Escalation of repression: Buddhist monks ready to protest and NGOs, including Caritas, subject to financial investigations – Agenzia Fides

“We are currently witnessing a real escalation of military violence. Yesterday alone, in Yangon and the surrounding area, we counted 189 dead, as reported by the Myanmar Now information network, which includes many activists. In our view, however, the dead could even be more. The repression is getting tougher and the population is suffering terribly, but is not giving up”, says a source of Agenzia Fides in the Catholic community of Yangon, who asks to remain anonymous for security reasons. This same source describes the situation of tension in the country, where the peaceful protest of young people, which began after the coup of 1 February, shows no signs of abating, despite an increasingly fierce response from the army.
In the face of this violence, the leaders and religious workers of the different faith communities remain alongside the population through prayer, moral and material assistance, helping to comfort the afflicted and to care for the wounded (see Fides, 16/3/2020).
In this scenario, in a message sent to Agenzia Fides, the Commission of Buddhist monks of Mandalay, who are part of a spontaneous organization called “Protest network of Buddhist monks”, warns the military who are occupying temples, monasteries and Buddhist places of prayer, calling for an immediate end to the violence of the army and the occupation of their buildings.
Should the army continue to use violence, Buddhist monks declare their readiness to march through the streets, organizing silent marches of protest across the country. Source: ASIA/MYANMAR – Escalation of repression: Buddhist monks ready to protest and NGOs, including Caritas, subject to financial investigations – Agenzia Fides