Home | Breaking News | Myanmar marks 30 yrs of pro-democracy uprising
A student holds a portrait of General Aung San during a ceremony to mark the 30th anniversary of the 8888 uprising in front of city hall in Yangon on 8 August 2018. This year marks the 30th anniversary of the 8888 Uprising that took place on 8 August 1988, part of broader anti-junta demonstrations across the country that catapulted Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi into the spotlight. Photo: AFP

Myanmar marks 30 yrs of pro-democracy uprising

WT24 Desk

Students and former activists in Myanmar marked the 30th anniversary of the famed 1988 pro-democracy uprising with a rousing but low-key ceremony, the culmination of three days of events to commemorate the revolt and its brutal suppression, AFP reports.

Some 2,000 people packed the Yangon University recreation centre, which was festooned with red flags sporting the “fighting peacock” logo of the movement that helped catapult Aung San Suu Kyi to prominence.

They crammed past exhibitions of photos and paintings, wrote messages of support on a mock prison cell wall, and took turns waiting for a photo next to a sculpture of a symbolic clenched fist.

Former protest leaders mounted the stage to reflect on the struggle against the military that first seized power in a 1962 coup.

“After 30 years, we students have come back here again,” Min Ko Naing, one of the more prominent protest leaders, told the crowd to applause.

“But some aren’t able to come back.”

After years of economic decline and a tightening clampdown on rights, student-led protests swelled into nationwide strikes and marches on 8 August 1988.

But troops rushed in to stamp out the movement, shooting protesters and locking them up en masse. The number of political prisoners in Myanmar’s fetid jails swelled while many fled the country into prolonged exile.

Students and former activists in Myanmar marked the 30th anniversary of the famed 1988 pro-democracy uprising with a rousing but low-key ceremony, the culmination of three days of events to commemorate the revolt and its brutal suppression.

Some 2,000 people packed the Yangon University recreation centre, which was festooned with red flags sporting the “fighting peacock” logo of the movement that helped catapult Aung San Suu Kyi to prominence.

They crammed past exhibitions of photos and paintings, wrote messages of support on a mock prison cell wall, and took turns waiting for a photo next to a sculpture of a symbolic clenched fist.

Former protest leaders mounted the stage to reflect on the struggle against the military that first seized power in a 1962 coup.

“After 30 years, we students have come back here again,” Min Ko Naing, one of the more prominent protest leaders, told the crowd to applause.

“But some aren’t able to come back.”

After years of economic decline and a tightening clampdown on rights, student-led protests swelled into nationwide strikes and marches on 8 August 1988.

But troops rushed in to stamp out the movement, shooting protesters and locking them up en masse.

The number of political prisoners in Myanmar’s fetid jails swelled while many fled the country into prolonged exile.

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