Kyal Sin/Angel: ‘Everything will be OK’ teenage protester mourned
Crowds gathered in Mandalay on Thursday for the funeral of a 19-year-old woman who was shot dead during Myanmar’s anti-coup protests a day earlier.
Kyal Sin, known as Angel, was wearing a T-shirt with the phrase “Everything will be OK” when she died.
Tributes have flooded in on social media, with many calling her a hero.
Since the 1 February coup, Myanmar has been gripped by mass protests demanding an end to military rule and the release of detained elected leaders.
More than 54 people have been killed by security forces in the protests so far, according to the UN Human Rights Office, although other reports put the figure much higher. Wednesday was the bloodiest day since the coup, with 38 protesters killed in cities and towns across the country.
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet called on security forces to “halt their vicious crackdown on peaceful protesters”.
Dozens of countries have now condemned the violence in Myanmar, though this has been largely ignored by the coup leaders.
And Myanmar’s ambassador to the UN, who the military said they had fired after he pleaded for help to restore democracy, called for “the strongest international actions” against the military.
“You see these last 3-4 days how many of our innocent and young lives have been taken away,” Kyaw Moe Tun told the BBC World Service’s Newshour programme in his first interview since he was replaced. “What we want for the people of Myanmar is protection.”
Meanwhile his deputy Tin Maung Naing, who the military appointed in his place, said he had resigned and that Kyaw Moe Tun was still ambassador.
What happened to Angel?
On Thursday in Mandalay, people lined the route of Angel’s funeral procession.
Mourners sang revolutionary songs and chanted anti-coup slogans, Reuters news agency reports.
Images of the teenager wearing her “Everything will be OK” T-shirt at the protests had gone viral.
Aware of the dangers of taking part in the protests, she had written her blood type details on Facebook and requested that her organs be donated in the event of her death.
Myat Thu, who was with her at the protest on Wednesday, said she had kicked open a water pipe so protesters could wash tear gas from their eyes. She had also tried to help him as police opened fire.
“She told me ‘Sit! Bullets will hit you’,” he told Reuters. “She cared for and protected others.”
He said police hit them with tear gas and then the bullets came.
Myat Thu said Angel, who had proudly voted in elections for the first time last year, was a “happy girl”.
“She loved her family and her family loved her so much too,” he said. “We are not in a war. There is no reason to use live bullets on people.”
People also paid tribute to Angel on social media. One friend wrote on Facebook: “My heart feels so my hurt.”