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Protester arrested minutes after calling for arrest of Myanmar’s ‘murderous generals’

Protesters arrested in downtown Yangon shortly after calling for the arrest of Myanmar's "murderous generals" on Aug. 31, 2018. Photo: Michael Nei Lian

An anti-military protester named Htin Kyaw was arrested in downtown Yangon this morning shortly after he began calling for the rest of Myanmar’s military leaders.

“UN and ICC — come quick and arrest Myanmar’s murderous generals,” said a placard he held outside Yangon’s city hall. He was joined by several supporters who wore shirts bearing the logo of the organization Movement for Democracy Current Forces (MDCF), which has just over 2,000 likes on Facebook.

One witness told Coconuts that Htin Kyaw was arrested around 10 minutes after the protest began, and he was taken to the Kyauktada Township police station.

The protest comes a few days after UN investigators called for Myanmar’s military leaders to be prosecuted at the International Criminal Court for genocide against the Rohingya and other crimes against the Kachin and Shan minority groups. They also accused civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi of contributing to the atrocities.

A spokesman for Suu Kyi’s office said on Tuesday that the government rejects the accusations but would investigate any claims of human rights abuses if evidence is presented.

More than 700,000 Rohingya were forcibly displaced under the guise of counterinsurgency operations last August, and more than 10,000 are estimated to have been killed, including 10 men and boys whose bodies were discovered in a mass grave outside the village of Inn Din last December. The following month, seven soldiers were sentenced to 10 years in prison each for murder.