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US warns against travel to Myanmar

US authorities directed “voluntary departure” of non-emergency government employees and their families on February 14…reports Asian Lite News

The US has advised its citizens not to go to Myanmar and raised its travel advisory for the country to level 4 amid a deteriorating situation.

In an advisory on Tuesday, the US Department of State said it had ordered all non-emergency government employees and their family members to leave the South-East Asian country “due to Covid-19 as well as areas of civil unrest and armed violence”, DPA news agency reported.

The department had authorized the “voluntary departure” of non-emergency government employees and their families on February 14.

“The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 4 Travel Health Notice for Burma due to COVID-19,” the advisory said.

“The Burmese military has detained and deposed elected government officials. Protests and demonstrations against military rule have occurred and are expected to continue.”

Death toll in Myanmar’s anti-coup protests tops 500

The advisory also listed areas in the country subject to “heightened civil unrest” and “armed violence” in different degrees and warned that the US government has “limited ability to provide emergency services” to citizens in certain areas.

At least 500 pro-democracy protesters have been killed since Myanmar’s February 1 military coup, a monitoring group said on Tuesday.

The Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP) puts the nationwide death toll at 510, after another 14 people lost their lives at the hands of security forces on Monday.

Myanmar’s military seized control of the country after an election which Aung San Suu Kyi’s ruling party won by a landslide.

Myanmar joins warring countries such as Somalia and Syria in the level 4 category.

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Myanmar deaths toll rises

Five more protesters were confirmed killed during a shoot out in Mandalay on Sunday…reports Asian Lite News

More casualties have been reported in Myanmar as demonstrators returned to the streets to protest against the February 1 military takeover of the country.

Media portal Mizzima News and witnesses said four people were killed on Monday, as the military continues to crack down on the continued protest movement.

“They are not only killing the protesters against the coup. They are also killing the civilians everywhere,” Kyi Soe Win, a 45-year-old protester who joined the demonstration in Mandalay, told dpa news agency.

“We are protesting in our township today, but our family is not safe at our home. The military are real terrorists,” Kyi Soe Win said.

Another five protesters were reported killed during shooting in Mandalay on Sunday, according to news portal Myanmar Now.

Military forces were tearing down the anti-coup protesters’ defence lines, including barricades made out of sand bags.

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Over 250 people have been killed since the beginning of the protests and about 2,665 arrested, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP), a non-profit organisation.

Demonstrators are demanding the release of de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi, who was ousted in the February 1 coup, as well as a return of the democratically-elected government.

The European Union’s Foreign Ministers on Monday agreed to impose sanctions on 11 individuals involved in the coup and repression of demonstrators.

Myanmar protestors flood streets in Mandalay despite army crack down

Ten of the targeted people belong to the highest ranks of the military, including its commander-in-chief, Min Aung Hlaing, and his deputy, Soe Win.

The US government also imposed sanctions on two additional members of the military junta in Myanmar, according to the Treasury Department.

The sanctions affect police chief and deputy home minister Than Hlaing and general Aung Soe, who commands special military forces.

Washington has already imposed strict export restrictions and sanctions on around a dozen members of Myanmar’s military leadership since the coup, including two adult children of commander Min Aung Hlaing.

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