Monks march across Myanmar to demand apology over mine crackdown

Featured - December 13th, 2012

A sea of maroon-robes surged through the streets of Myanmar on Wednesday as hundreds of monks demanded authorities apologize over a crackdown on protests at a copper mine last month which left many injured.

Around 500 monks marched through the streets of Yangon, Mandalay and Monywa, asking the government to apologize to dozens of monks who were hurt during the crackdown on protests at the Chinese-backed Monywa mine in northern Myanmar, in the latest show of public discontent in the country.

“We want them to apologize to the monks who were burnt during the crackdown at the Latpadaung mountain copper mine,” a protest leader told AFP, adding that they want authorities to apologize directly to those injured.

Religious Affairs Minister Myint Maung apologized to some of the country’s most senior clerics over the incident, which caused “great grief” to the government. About 100 police also apologized to a group of monks in Monywa immediately after the crackdown.

At least 99 monks and 11 others sustained injuries, including severe burns, state media reported.

Protesters demanded a halt to operations at the copper mine, a joint venture between Chinese firm Wanbao and military-owned Myanmar Economic Holdings, over land grabbing issues and alleged corruption.