Yangon – At least nine people, including a pregnant woman, were injured in shooting by Myanmar’s security services to clear squatters blocking train tracks in Mandalay on Wednesday night to make way for a train with security personnel onboard. The train left Mandalay early in the morning.
Around 50 police and military personnel used rubber bullets, tear gas and stones at a squatter settlement near railway staff housing in Chanmyathazi Township at around 9pm.
Former railway staff were living as squatters and blocking the train tracks in support of the civil disobedience movement.
Several videos show the security forces firing rubber bullets at squatters’ homes and throwing stones while trying to clear the tracks.
They also fired at the adjacent office of the Minkhaung Rescue Society that houses several philanthropic organizations.
Two ambulances were damaged and a member of the rescue team was injured in the leg, said Ko Aung Bu of the society.
“They deliberately fired at our office with several rubber bullets. We condemn the violence,” he told The Irrawaddy on Thursday.
He said his clinic treated about eight people, including a pregnant woman, who were injured by rubber bullets.
Dr. Kyi Moh Moh Lwin, who provided treatment, said the injuries were not serious.
Ko Thurain Tun, a member of Myanma Railways staff in Mandalay, said around 1,000 railway staff have joined the civil disobedience movement against military rule.
Myanmar’s military regime has been intensifying its crackdown against demonstrators in Mandalay as protests in the city gain momentum.
The security forces have used tear gas, slingshots, rubber bullets and air guns firing lead pellets.
More than 100 protesters have been injured, including 10 who were seriously hurt, according to the Kanung Institute, a Mandalay-based NGO working to promote democracy and public participation in governance.
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