Burmese villagers hold up train in protest against military coup in Myanmar

Angry Burmese locals held up a train on Tuesday (Feb 16) to protest against the military coup in Myanmar. Footage shows villagers in Mawlamyine, formerly Moulmein, holding up the passing locomotive amid anger around the country at the ousting of Aung San Suu Kyi. Protests have erupted following the brutal military coup on February 1, which saw the well-like Nobel Peace Prize Laurette detained alongside other civilian politicians. Villagers in Moulmein, 300km south east of Rangoon, now called Yangon, said the blockage was part of the ‘Civil Disobedience Movement’ which has spread amid calls for Aung San Suu Kyi to be released. One said: "People have this realisation that the Civil Disobedience Movement (CDM) is the only way to defeat the military government." Protesters are now urging government employees to strike and bring the country to a halt to prevent the army from consolidating power. Hard-line military chiefs seized power with force on February 1 and have reacted with brutal crackdowns, blasting locals with water cannon, firing gunshots, closing communications and enforcing curfews. Army chiefs last week reacted to the mass protests by closing Internet and phone connections across the capital on Saturday (February 6) shortly after 11 am local time before it was restored on Sunday (February 7) at around 3 pm local time. They then blasted protesters with water cannon and fired warning gunshots earlier this week. International pressure on Myanmar has grown, with US Democrat politicians warning of sanctions on the country. Joe Biden announced at the White House on Wednesday. Burma was governed by Britain from 1824 to 1948, during which time it became the second-wealthiest country in Southeast Asia but following independence was ruled by the military until 2011 when democratic reforms began.