Myanmar protesters hand red roses to police at rally against military coup


Protesters handed red roses to police during a march against the military coup in Yangon, Myanmar.

Footage from Saturday (Feb 6) shows the uplifting scene as the woman made the peaceful gesture and asked police not to harm people at the rally.

Large crowds wearing red converged on the City Hall near Sule Pagoda, which became the focal point as dozens of smaller marches all joined.

At one point, large crowds surrounding police trucks while hurling insults and refusing to let them pass through.

Army chiefs reacted to the rally by closing Internet and phone connections across the capital on Saturday (Feb 6) shortly after 11 am local time before it was restored the next day at around 3 pm local time.

The unrest came amid anger at the military coup that toppled leader Aung San Suu Kyi on Monday (Feb 1). The Nobel Peace Prize laureate and other politicians were detained and army chiefs seized power in a military coup.

Doctors, nurses, students and residents have protested and called for the civilian government to be reinstated.

The military said in a statement that ‘all authority has been given to the top army commander and a one-year state of emergency has been declared’. Reacting to events, The White House said it was ‘alarmed’ by the developments in Myanmar, which is also known as Burma.

Spokesman Jen Psaki said: ‘We continue to affirm our strong support for Burma’s democratic institutions.’ America called for Aung San Suu Kyi to be released and threatened to ‘take action against those responsible if these steps are not reversed’.

Burma was governed by Britain from 1824 to 1948, during which time it became the second-wealthiest country in Southeast Asia but following independence was ruled by the military until 2011 when democratic reforms began.