Facebook Bans All Accounts Linked to Myanmar Military

Pro-military marchers attack anti-coup protesters
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 25, 2021 12:02 AM CST
Facebook Bans All Accounts Linked to Myanmar Military
An anti-coup protester stands next to images of deposed Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi during a street march in Mandalay, Myanmar, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021.   (AP Photo)

Social media giant Facebook announced Thursday it was banning all accounts linked to Myanmar’s military as well as ads from military-controlled companies in the wake of the army’s seizure of power on Feb. 1. It said in a statement that it was treating the post-coup situation in Myanmar as an "emergency," explaining that the ban was precipitated by events since the coup, including "deadly violence," the AP reports. Facebook has already banned several military-linked accounts since the coup, including army-controlled Myawaddy TV and state television broadcaster MRTV. The bans are also being applied on Instagram, which is owned by Facebook.

Opposition to the coup continues inside Myanmar, with large demonstrations in many cities and towns. There was a tense standoff on Wednesday in the country’s second-biggest city, Mandalay, where armed police blocked the path of about 3,000 teachers and students. After about two hours, during which demonstrators played protest songs and listened to speeches condemning the coup, the crowd moved away. On Saturday, police and soldiers fatally shot two people in Mandalay while breaking up a strike by dock workers. On Thursday, members of a pro-military group attacked protesters in the country's biggest city. Photos and videos on social media showed the attacks, which injured several people in downtown Yangon as police stood by without intervening. The attackers fired slingshots and carried iron rods, knives, and other sharp implements.

(More Myanmar stories.)

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