Myanmar ambassador to the United Nations has been fired

Myanmar ambassador to the United Nations has been fired

The junta has repeatedly justified its seizure of power by alleging widespread electoral fraud in the November elections, which Suu Kyi's party had won in a landslide, and promised fresh polls in a year.

Uncertainty has grown over Ms. Suu Kyi's whereabouts, as the independent Myanmar Now website on Friday quoted officials of her National League for Democracy (NLD) party as saying she had been moved this week from house arrest to an undisclosed location.

There have been daily protests and strikes by democracy supporters for about three weeks, often drawing hundreds of thousands of people across the diverse country.

Police dispersed protesters in Myanmar's two biggest cities on Friday, firing stun grenades, rubber bullets and guns into the air, witnesses said, as the challenge to the army's bid to re-impose its rule showed no sign of slackening.

Several people were also hurt by police in the second city of Mandalay, domestic media and an emergency worker said.

The military's escalation of force against pro-democracy protesters has drawn worldwide condemnation, including from U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who warned on Twitter earlier this week that "the United States will continue to take firm action against those who perpetrate violence against the people of Burma as they demand the restoration of their democratically elected government".

The violence came after demonstrations entered their third week of protesting the military coup that ousted Aung San Suu Kyi's elected government on February 1.

"We need further strongest possible action from the worldwide community to immediately end the military coup. and to restore the democracy", he said.

Kyaw Moe Tun, his voice trembling, called on all member states to issue public statements strongly condemning the coup during the special meeting on Myanmar.

Delivering his final words in Burmese, the career diplomat raised the three-finger salute of pro-democracy protesters and announced "our cause will prevail".

Opponents of the coup hailed Kyaw Moe Tun as a hero and flooded social media with messages of thanks. "They are protecting a insane dictator", the protesters chanted angrily.

Defying the military in his remarks Friday, Ambassador Kyaw Moe Tun denounced the coup as "not acceptable in this modern world", and pleaded for global intervention to use "any means necessary" to bring an end to the upheaval.

China's envoy did not criticise the coup and said the situation was part of Myanmar's "internal affairs".

"We asked all parties to exercise restraint and not use avoid casualties and bloodshed", Marsudi said in a virtual news conference.

A lawyer acting for Suu Kyi, Khin Maung Zaw, told Reuters he had also heard from NLD officials that she had been moved from her home in the capital, Naypyitaw, but could not confirm it. Authorities did not respond to a request for comment.

The lawyer said he had been given no access to Ms. Suu Kyi ahead of her next hearing on Monday, adding: "I'm concerned that there will be a loss of rights to access to justice and access to legal counsel".

Since the coup, at least five people have been killed - four of them from injuries sustained at anti-coup demonstrations that saw security forces open fire on protesters.

It was among the worst violence Myanmar has seen since protests erupted following a military coup earlier this month.

More than 770 people have been arrested, charged and sentenced since the February 1 putsch, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners monitoring group, with some 680 still behind bars.

Suu Kyi, 75, spent almost 15 years under house arrest during military rule.

Suu Kyi, who has not been publicly seen since she was detained, is now facing two charges for having unregistered walkie-talkies in her residence and breaking coronavirus rules.

The junta dismissed the old commission's members and appointed new ones, who on Friday annulled the election results.

The Security Council has voiced concern over the state of emergency, but stopped short of condemning the coup due to opposition by Russian Federation and China.

Marsudi's efforts came as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) urged Myanmar's junta to ease tensions. Indonesia has taken the lead, but coup opponents fear the efforts could legitimise the junta.

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