Deaths Mount as Myanmar’s Military Seeks to Crush Protests

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Deaths Mount as Myanmar’s Military Seeks to Crush Protests

SINGAPORE—At least 38 people were killed as Myanmar’s new military rulers, who overthrew its democratically-elected government Feb. 1, continued to unleash a lethal campaign to suppress protests that have swept the country for nearly a month.

The death toll, announced by the United Nations, makes Wednesday the deadliest since the takeover.

Security forces opened fire at protesters in numerous cities, according to demonstrators and medics responding to the violence. A 19-year old woman, wearing a T-shirt that read “Everything will be ok,” was fatally shot in the head. Men were struck by bullets in their eyes and chests as they ran, and police assaulted medics.

Protesters had been more cautious since a deadly crackdown on Sunday, when police killed at least 18 people. Security forces who had only occasionally shot live rounds before that day have since used gunfire frequently, according to civil-society groups, protesters and medics.

Protesters have poured into the streets for 26 straight days demanding that the coup, which ended a decadelong transition to democracy, be reversed. Demonstrations at times drawing tens of thousands have taken place, with crowds mobilizing in towns and cities across the country. The large-scale participation has underscored the broad rejection of the military, which governed Myanmar for half a century before the democratic shift began.

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