Posted by: Sam Carson | 24 September, 2007

Masses on the Streets in Burma

Today saw the largest protests seen in Burma (Myanmar) in almost 20 years.  Over the past week Buddhist monks lead a protest against the economic hardships forced on the Burmese people by the Junta that runs the country.  This from the Financial Times:

As many as 100,000 people on Monday took to the streets of Rangoon, Burma’s former capital city, in the largest demonstration seen in the country since the August 1988 pro-democracy protests that ended in a bloody crackdown.

The protest came as calls grew for the generals who govern Burma to maintain their restraint they have shown over the past week as daily protests led by Buddhist monks against the economic hardship facing ordinary Burmese have grown.

“The government has so far behaved with commendable restraint,” Mark Canning, the British ambassador in Rangoon, told the Financial Times. But, he added: “This is gaining real momentum. There are some very powerful factors driving what is going on.”

….

The unrest in Burma began in mid-August when the Burmese regime raised fuel prices by as much as 500 per cent without warning, adding to the economic woes of Burma’s 53m people.

Over the past week, however, protests have grown exponentially in scale as monks across the country have taken to the streets and bystanders have begun to join in. Monday’s demonstrations included ordinary civilians, students and some pro-democracy parliamentarians elected in 1990.

“Even last Wednesday, this could not have been conceived of,” Mr Canning said. “People are following the monks gingerly, but getting more into it as every day passes.”

Could this be the beginnings of change?

Wikipedia: Myanmar 

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