AUCKLAND, New Zealand — Some 50 people gathered at Aotea Square here June 13 to protest the brutal military regime’s war against the people of Myanmar since it seized power in a coup Feb. 1. Similar protests were held around the world that weekend to bring attention to the murders, jailings and repression in Myanmar as the meeting of the main imperialist Group of Seven powers took place in the U.K.
“Since 1962 minority rights have been violated in Myanmar. For decades minorities have been persecuted and tortured, but the majority of Burmese did not speak out,” Pastor Jeffrey Pau told protesters. There are 136 ethnic minorities in Myanmar and the rulers try to keep them — including the Bamar majority — divided.
“After the coup the military has been torturing and killing people of the Burmese majority” he said. “We never thought it would happen to us. It has opened our eyes to understand the suffering of ethnic minorities. Even in 2017 when the Rohingya were persecuted the majority did not speak out. Even Aung San Suu Kyi did not speak up. But now we can see, wherever injustice is found we must speak out.”