In the aftermath of the military takeover in Myanmar on April 4, concerns regarding the safety of the children in Myanmar continue to rise. An interview with Myanmar’s Hein Min, a student participating in different movements of the revolution, sheds light on the current situation of children’s rights in Myanmar.
Myanmar’s military publicly announced that “protests would be met with shots to the head.” The acts of terror committed by Myanmar’s military include the killing of over 700 people and detainment of 3,000 more. Min shares the horrors of life in Myanmar in the current climate; he says, “We have experienced a military coup. We have another parallel government” and “even staying in our home, we can be arrested or detained.” The terrorist military is no stranger to using airstrikes to weaken protestors that are deemed as “dangerous to the military root.”
The military’s actions are not only affecting protestors but also average citizens and their families- the quality of food and shelter is worsening substantially and families are beginning to get displaced for their second or third time. The violence yet to stop, and don’t exclude the most innocent among us: children. According to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP), in just the first two months of Myanmar’s military coup, at least forty three children have been killed. Min also has shared stories of Myanmar’s children and the crimes committed against them. One story shared was of an eleven year old girl living in the capital city of Myanmar. Being curious, she looked outside upon hearing the chaos and protests, and was met with a gunshot to the head without any warning. A similar story is one of Khin Myo Chit. Six-year old-Chit was running towards her father during a home raid and was shot and killed by the police in her father’s lap. Aye Myat Thu is another six year old girl who was brutally murdered by Myanmar’s military. She was shot in the left temple; however, according to the military, she simply “fell down and died.” Thousands of children and their families have been forced to flee their homes and seek refuge in internally displaced person (IDP) camps.
The United Nations has responded by promising to “pursue dialogue and reconciliation in accordance with the will and interests of the people of Myanmar.” The UN called for the investigation and prosecution of Burmese army general, Min Augn Haing, for war crimes and crimes against humanity. Myanmar’s children have endured lifelong trauma; all they know is violence and war. However, they are being slowly yet ruthlessly forgotten — births are rarely recorded and countless of Myanmar’s children are not formally recognized by society. As of date, forty five children have been killed and hundreds more injured in the fight against the dictatorship. To help those in Myanmar, spread awareness and donate. Islamic Relief, Rescue, and Save the Children are just a few of the countless organizations you could choose from. A few dollars could change a child’s life in Myanmar