Anti-coup protesters hold slogans calling for boycott of Chinese goods at protest in Yangon, Myanmar on Wednesday April 7, 2021 Protesters continue to hold daily protests in some parts of Myanmar despite threats of arrest and dispersal from government forces as they rally against Feb 1 military coup that overthrew the civilian government of Aung San Suu Kyi (AP Photo)

YANGON, Myanmar – Security forces stormed a town in northwest Myanmar on Wednesday where some residents had used homemade hunting rifles to resist the military takeover in February, killing at least 11 civilians and injuring many more, according to local reports

If all 11 deaths are confirmed, it would be one of the highest single-day death rates outside the country’s two largest cities, Yangon and Mandalay

Online news site Khonumthung Burmese said the attack on Kalay began before dawn Videos on the site included what appeared to be sounds of rifle fire, large caliber weapons and explosions grenades Social media posts said rocket-propelled grenades were used in the attack, but provided no evidence

The news site said that in addition to the seven dead, many people were injured and arrested in the town, also known as Kalemyo or Kale. More than half of the city’s population is from the Chin ethnic minority

Most of the deaths occurred in the morning, but more were reported in the afternoon, bringing the total to 11, according to news sites The Irrawaddy and Myanmar Now.

Security forces killed at least 581 protesters and bystanders by Tuesday in their crackdown on protests against the Feb 1 coup that overthrew Aung San Suu Kyi’s elected government, according to the Association for Assistance to Political Prisoners , which monitors victims and arrests

Almost all of the protests were non-violent, but as police and soldiers increased their use of lethal force, some participants armed themselves with homemade weapons such as gasoline bombs in self-defense. In Kalay, some locals took simple but deadly homemade hunting rifles

Myanmar Now reported on Tuesday that protesters in Kalay had set up strongholds in the neighborhood and inflicted casualties on security forces

He said that on March 28, when the army attempted to attack Kalay, protesters in the town and neighboring villages put up fierce resistance. The attack came a day after junta forces killed more than 110 people across the country, the highest number of dead in a single day since the coup

The report says the protesters “more than held their own. Four of them died that night, but also an equal number of enemies, including one or two officers. The protesters also managed to injure 17 of their heavily armed attackers “

Protesters, who organized themselves into a “civilian Kalay army”, inflicted more casualties in the following days, he said.

Daily protests against the military regime continued on Wednesday in other towns and villages, including Mogok, in central Myanmar, and Bago, northeast of Yangon, where messages on social media indicated that the forces security forces fired live ammunition at demonstrators Irrawaddy news site reported two deaths in Bago

Dozens of people burned a Chinese flag and marched through Ahlone township in Yangon to call for a boycott of Chinese-made goods Many protesters believe Beijing is backing the military regime with economic and political backing, including the threat a veto at the UN Security Council against any international sanction

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World news – CA – Myanmar security forces attack town that has resisted with guns