Myanmar death toll mounts amid crackdown on coup protests PA Media

Karen National Union shows protesters staging a demonstration against the military coup in Doo Pla Ya district of Kayin state in eastern Myanmar

"The military junta's widespread use of arbitrary arrests and enforced disappearances appears created to strike fear in the hearts of anti-coup protesters", said Brad Adams, Human Rights Watch's Asia director.

On Friday, the UNSC issued a statement condemning the military for the use of violence against anti-government protesters in Myanmar, following a closed-door meeting.

In response, pro-democracy groups shared radio frequencies, offline apps that work without a data connection, and tips for using SMS messages as an alternative to data services to communicate.

"In the following days, there are street protests".

"Let's listen to the radio again".

The lawyer met Suu Kyi Wednesday too through a videoconference call at a police station, and said she looked fine and her complexion looked good as well.

In another blow to the junta's business interests, two military-owned supermarkets in Yangon were set ablaze overnight, and more worldwide companies cut ties. Internet was available only on fixed lines, rare in Myanmar where most homes and businesses connect through wireless networks.

Myanmar has been rocked by protests since the army overthrew the elected government of Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi on Febuary 1 citing unsubstantiated claims of fraud in a November election.

Local media reported that five other people were killed today by bullets from the security forces.

Separately, security forces opened fire at a rally near the central city of Mandalay, wounding four people, two critically, according to three domestic media organisations.

Also Friday, a South Korean bank said it temporarily closed its branch in Yangon and was considering bringing its South Korean employees back home after security forces fatally shot one of its Myanmar employees.

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Ten of Myanmar's major rebel groups have thrown their support behind the country's anti-coup movement, fanning fears that a broader conflict could erupt in a country plagued for decades by on-and-off fighting between the military and the ethnic armed forces. Entire benches were covered in flowers and anti-coup messages.

The extent of the internet shutdown was not immediately clear, with pictures of marches, flower strikes and a funeral of a slain protester still being shared on social media.

One video showed a group of protesters carrying away a young man with what appeared to be a serious head wound.

Ms Suu Kyi, three of her deposed cabinet ministers and Professor Turnell were charged a week ago in a Yangon court, lawyer Khin Maung Zaw told Reuters by phone, adding he learned of the new charge two days ago.

At least 536 civilians have been killed in protests, 141 of them on Saturday, the bloodiest day of the unrest, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP).

"This is a reaction to the ongoing violent clashes between the military and the civilian population", the company said in a statement.

It comes after protesters were in the streets in several urban centres day and night on Thursday, where some burned copies of the military-drafted 2008 constitution.

Western countries have condemned the coup and the violence and some have imposed limited sanctions.

Britain, the country's former colonial ruler, announced sanctions on the Myanmar Economic Corporation (MEC), a conglomerate controlled by the military that Washington has already blacklisted. Fashion brand Next announced it had suspended orders from Myanmar's factories. The coup reversed years of slow progress toward democracy in the Southeast Asian country.

The Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore and most recently Thailand have called for an end to the violence.

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