Raid on monasteries: hundreds of monks arrested

China Aid Association
Yangon (AsiaNews) — Hundreds of monks were arrested in a pre dawn raid on monasteries by the military, east of Yangon.  Witnesses confirm that other monasteries were raided in an attempt to stop all anti-regime demonstrations.
This morning Ngwekyaryan monastery displayed broken windows, doors ajar and rooms thrashed.  Money and jewels, gifted to the monks by the faithful, have disappeared.  According to some at least 100 bonzi were taken by police.  Others succeeded in escaping during the night and returned this morning to the monastery ready for another day of protest.  In Yangon, were a curfew was ordered between 9pm and 5 am, the streets were calm in the aftermath of yesterday’s charge by riot police on the massive protest led by monks and civilians.
According to local sources at least 5 monks were killed, hit by gun shots or beaten to death beneath police batons.  The Burmese state radio station, Radio Myanmar, reported that one person had been killed and three others injured – the first official confirmation that the violence had caused casualties.
While monks and ordinary people prepared themselves for another day of marches, the police surrounded the Shwedangong and Sule pagodas, the starting point and culmination of the protests.  At least 7 water jettison trucks are parked before the latter.Yesterday the UN Security Council in New York met in emergency session to discuss the crisis, but concluded by merely urging the junta to “stop the violence”.  The US and European Union wanted the council to consider imposing sanctions – but that was rejected by China.  They welcomed the dispatch of UN special envoy Ibrahim Gambari to the region, and called on the Burmese authorities to receive him “as soon as possible”, in the hopes that the junta will allow him entry to Myanmar


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