Doctors join Yangon protests, vow to continue defying military regime

Doctors joined protests in Yangon on Friday, vowing to continue taking part in the Civil Disobedience Movement until power is returned to the civilian government.

A column of about 1,000 doctors marched from Yangon’s University of Medicine (1) as part of a seventh day of nationwide protests against last week’s military coup. 

“Until we return to civilian rule, until the civilian government that the people elected is reinstated, we’ll keep fighting to the end,” Dr Shein Thu Kyaw, one of those marching, told Myanmar Now.

He urged all governmental employees to join forces to bring the military’s governance mechanisms to a halt.

Dr Lin Lu Wai, a pediatrician, said it was vital the public continued to support the movement at a time when the State Administrative Council is ordering nighttime arrests in a bid to crush dissent.

“They’re using force now,” he told Myanmar Now. “And we need the public’s support to withstand it. Otherwise it’ll just be as if the doctors participating in CDM are being sacrificed.”

Pyae Phyo Naing, a doctor from Ingapu township in Ayeyarwady region, was arrested last night, apparently for his involvement in the civil disobedience movement. 

Doctors stationed in Yangon have so far not been targeted for arrests, Dr Lin Lu Wai said, but those in smaller districts and regions need the public’s support and protection. 

Hundreds of thousands of people in towns and cities across the country have taken to the streets since the military seized power last Monday and arrested State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, President Win Myint, and other top government figures. 

Medical professionals spearheaded the civil disobedience by staging protests and walkouts in the days following the coup.   

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