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Situation in Burma on Saturday, September 29, 2007 (hour by hour account from 12.00 noon to 4.00 pm)
Source: Mizzma News (www.mizzima.com), Sept. 29, 2007
The turmoil in Burma enters its fourth straight day with protestors continuing to defy the military. Monks are now rarely seen on the streets, while tens of thousands of protestors are continuously beaten up by security forces.
The following is a chronology of events as reported in Mizzima News. All time indicated are Burmese Standard time, (GMT +6:30 hours), September 29, 2007
Number of protesters increase in Rangoon: With more people joining in, protesters in Rangoon have swelled to more than 10,000. As security forces continue to beat and crackdown, protestors flee shouting slogans and again gather in different places. Troops stood about 50 metres from the protesters. As the clapping of the protesters reverberates the army is getting ready to open fire.
Soldiers open fire on protestors near Sanpya cinema hall. The number of injuries and casualties remained unconfirmed.
Soldiers and security forces are conducting a search on by passers on the 40th street in downtown Rangoon.
Protest in Rangoon: About 2,000 protestors are now marching on the Merchant Street in the heart of Rangoon and are shouting slogans of "Peoples' desires must be fulfiledl". Soldiers and police are reportedly rounding up the protestors and arresting them.
The situation is a run and chase situation between the soldiers and the protestors. The protestors would run when the soldiers chase them after but again gather in other places nearby.
"So far there is no shooting yet. Soldiers are rounding up the protestors and arresting them whoever they get in that place. The protestors run and again gathered near Theingyi market and again protested there. They are again shouting slogans, and again the soldiers are rounding them up. There are about 1000 protestors but there are many more onlookers around," an eyewitness told Mizzima.
Situations in townships in Rangoon Division:
Soldiers last night went to ward No. (8) in Hlaing Township to raid a Buddhist monastery but the soldiers had to return back because the locals raised their voices against the protesters.
San Chaung Township
U Thet Wai, Chairman of the NLD San Chaung Township was arrested last night by authorities.
Six 'Dyna" light trucks, which bear no number plates, with people dressed in plainclothes are seen heading towards Rangoon from Hleku Township.
Two persons wounded by bullets and a dead child was seen in Kyimyindine hospital. Hospital authorities refused to hand over the corpse of the dead child, when the parents requested for burial, and instead they demanded the recommendation of the District Chairman from the parents of the child.
About 500 Soldiers from Regiment No. 66, security forces, and police are stationed at the Sule Pagoda. At least 20 "Dyna" light vehicles, which have no number plates, and believed to be used for the transport of the arrested protesters, are also seen parking near the security forces.
Several other special police with red ribbons on their necks could also be seen about 100 yards away from the soldiers.
"They are quite relaxed, but are fully equipped. Some are in stand-by but many remain sitting and many onlookers are watching them in awe. It looks like that there would be less protests today," an observer told Mizzima.
About 20 security men are stationed at the eastern gate of Shwedagon pagoda. After the shootings and killings at the Pagoda previous days, the Tarmway-Kyaikkasan road, connecting Rangoon with Thingankyun and South Okklapah townships was blocked.
Situation in Rangoon is near to normal with most civilians continuing their daily work.
UN Secretary-General's Special envoy to Burma, Ibrahim Gambari will arrive today, a UN statement said.
The World body chief, Ban Ki-moon in a statement said he has called on the Burmese military government "to engage in a constructive dialogue with his Special Adviser and to commit to a path of peaceful and inclusive national reconciliation."
Gambari, who has made two earlier visits to the military-ruled Southeast Asian nation in 2006, is currently in Singapore meeting official of the Foreign Ministry.
Kyaikkasan Road killing field: A letter sent from Rangoon, titled "Killings on September 27," said many protesters were killed on Kyaikkasan Road near State High School No. 3 at about 3 p.m. on Thursday.
"When the protesters were marching to the North, the army blocked the intersection near Super One Supermarket. When the protesters turned back to the South, then another group of soldiers blocked the road near Tarmway Junction. The troops hit and removed three leading protesters holding flags. Then they opened fire on the protesters from both sides," the letter added.
Intelligence officers have rounded up the residence of U Ko Gyi, Chairman of the NLD Mandalay division.
Protest in Mogoke: At least 11 trucks of army and police are seen patrolling in Mogoke town in Mandalay Division, where big demonstrators took place in recent days. The army battalions currently stationed in the town are a replacement of previous battalions that faced the hugh public protests but did not shoot the protesters.
Yesterday, more than 8, 000 monks and people marched through the streets of Mogoke in protest against the government, according to witnesses reports.
Starting from Phaungdaw Oo at about 2:00 p.m (local time), the protesters marched through the town and shouted slogans such as "End to torture against humans", "May love prevail in the world", "May the will of the people be fulfilled".
The protestors marched through Phaungdaw Oo on the cinema road, Aung Chan Thar, Shwegonthar, and Peik Syway wards.Though security forces confronted the protesters at Aung Chan Thar ward, the protestors avoided the confrontation and dispersed off themselves peacefully.
Preparing for crackdown in Monywa: As a preparation to crackdown on possible protesters, the authorities in Monywa of Sagaing Division have hired at least 10 persons from each locality and have gathered them together at the City Hall in Yonegyi ward, near the Township police station today.
A local resident explained Mizzima of the situation in Monywa.
"Authorities have ordered to each locality (wards) to send at least 3 fire fighters, 3 members of Swan Arrshin, and 3 USDA members. They are paid 1500 kyat each. And these people have nothing to do, they are now put together in the City Hall. They sleep there in the City Hall, they come back in the morning, and so far they are not instructed to do anything yet. It looks like they are kept as standby ready to crack down the demonstrators if any."
"The authorities collected the money from the local people. Each household has to pay 500 kyat. The authorities had demanded for the people to be recruited since three days ago. But most of those who went recruited are drunkards and junks, those who would not live for too long."
"And the Ward Chairmen are summoned for a meeting every night at the City Hall. The Chairmen and secretaries have to attend all the meetings. And it is said that those who fail to attend the meeting will have to pay from their monthly salaries. I don't know how much salaries of these ward chairmen. It has been about a week now since they call for regular meetings at night. And the meeting was called by Major Myint Naing from Regiment No. 50, that is posted in Chin State."
Monywa town has at least 30 wards.