(CNN)The family of a young girl killed in her home by Myanmar’s security forces say they have gone into hiding and dare not return for fear of being targeted by the military.
Khin Myo Chit was shot dead in her father’s arms after security forces kicked down the door to their home in the city of Mandalay on Tuesday. She is the youngest victim yet in the military’s post-coup crackdown. Earlier reports said Khin Myo Chit was 7 years old, but her family confirmed Thursday she was only 6. “They shot her as she leaned towards my chest. I ran and was carrying her and could not even take a look at them (security forces) after she was shot,” her father told Reuters. Khin Myo Chit was rushed to an emergency clinic, one of many set up by doctors and nurses to care for protesters unable to attend hospitals now occupied by the military.The doctor who received her said the girl had already died before she arrived at the clinic at around 6 p.m. local time. “We couldn’t do anything to save her life,” said the doctor.Read More”Why did they (soldiers) shoot her to death, for what crime? And what sin have we committed?” the girl’s sister said from an undisclosed location. “What have we done? And what has the child done?”CNN is not naming the father, sister or doctor for security reasons. While in the house, the sister said security forces took away her brother. They have no information as to his whereabouts or even if he is alive. “He was arrested by the military and (we’re) not sure whether he is alive or not. We have no information from him yet,” she said. “We dare not go home till now and are still in hiding,” she said. “There are still soldiers and police in our house.”This undated handout picture shows 6-year-old Khin Myo Chit who was shot at her home during protests against military coup in Mandalay, Myanmar. More than 20 children killedMyanmar was thrown into turmoil when the military, headed by coup leader Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, seized power last month, overturning a democratic election, detaining civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi, and establishing a ruling military junta.Anti-coup protests and strikes have since gripped the nation but are being violently suppressed by the junta’s police forces and military soldiers, with widespread reports of shootings, enforced disappearances and torture of political prisoners.At least 320 people have been killed in the bloody crackdown, according to advocacy group Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP), though activists say the death toll is likely much higher. More than 20 of those deaths are children, humanitarian organization Save the Children said.Many residents in towns and cities across the country live in fear of being dragged out of their homes in nighttime raids by security forces. Almost 3,000 people have been detained since February 1, according to AAPP. Many of them are young people and students and their families often have no idea where they are being held or what condition they are in. Families of the dead are also worried soldiers will return to seize the body of their loved ones, as they have done before. It’s not clear why the junta would want the bodies, but some families suspect they want to cover up the military’s role in their deaths.She was shot dead, her body dug up and her grave filled with cement. But her fight is not overWorried the military would attempt to seize Khin Myo Chit’s body, her sister said they had difficulty burying her according to the Muslim tradition.”We have to bury her without letting everyone know (and) we couldn’t go with funeral cars as we worried they might steal her body, we could only use the house cars for her funeral,” she said. “When we got to the cemetery, a few people were there so we had to hide her body, we had to wait until they were gone and only when no one was around could we bury her.”The family have been unable to mourn the young child properly. Instead, they have been forced to leave their home and keep watching over their shoulders, terrified they may be picked up by junta forces. “It’s not surprising at all that soldiers are also willing to seize protesters’ bodies to short circuit efforts to mourn them, and recognize them as martyrs,” said Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “That’s why this grieving family is forced to hide, and surreptitiously bury their child, because the military fears what they represent, which is an aggrieved family who have every reason in the world to cry to the heavens about the loss they have suffered,” added Robertson. “The Tatmadaw wants their voices silenced, and will not hesitate to use force to make it so.” Photos: Unrest in MyanmarThe mother of Aung Kaung Htet wails during the teenage boy’s funeral on Sunday, March 21. Aung, 15, was killed when military junta forces opened fire on anti-coup protesters in Yangon, Myanmar.Hide Caption 1 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarUnidentified people cross the Tiau River at the India-Myanmar border on Saturday, March 20. Some people from Myanmar have sought refuge in India since the protests began.Hide Caption 2 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarAn anti-coup protester jumps over a makeshift barricade in Yangon on Friday, March 19.Hide Caption 3 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters take positions on Yangon’s Bayint Naung Bridge on Wednesday, March 17. The bridge was blocked with an improvised barricade to prevent security forces from crossing.Hide Caption 4 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarMedical students hold up the three-finger salute at the Yangon funeral of Khant Nyar Hein on Tuesday, March 16. The first-year medical student was fatally shot during the crackdown.Hide Caption 5 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters test Molotov cocktails in Yangon on March 16.Hide Caption 6 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters stand near burning tires in Yangon on March 16.Hide Caption 7 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarAnti-coup protesters pray in Yangon on March 14.Hide Caption 8 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarEmergency workers transport the body of Shel Ye Win, who was shot by security forces in Mandalay, Myanmar.Hide Caption 9 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarSmoke billows from the industrial zone of the Hlaing Tharyar township in Yangon on March 14. The Chinese Embassy in Myanmar said several Chinese-funded factories were set ablaze during protests. Demonstrators have accused Beijing of supporting the coup and junta.Hide Caption 10 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA member of Myanmar’s police is seen firing a weapon toward protesters in Yangon on March 13.Hide Caption 11 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarPeople lay flowers and light candles beside bloodied pavement where protester Chit Min Thu was killed in Yangon.Hide Caption 12 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarMilitary trucks are seen near a burning barricade in Yangon that was erected by protesters and then set on fire by soldiers on March 10.Hide Caption 13 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA protester holds a homemade shield during an anti-coup demonstration in Yangon on March 9.Hide Caption 14 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA protester discharges a fire extinguisher to counter the impact of tear gas that was fired by police in Yangon on March 8.Hide Caption 15 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters string up longyi, traditional clothing worn in Myanmar, during a demonstration in Yangon on March 7.Hide Caption 16 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarThe wife of Phoe Chit, a protester who died during a demonstration, cries over her husband’s coffin during his funeral in Yangon on March 5.Hide Caption 17 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters step on portraits of Myanmar’s armed forces chief, Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, during a demonstration in Yangon on March 5.Hide Caption 18 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarPeople cry in Yangon on March 4, near a spot where a family member was killed while protesting.Hide Caption 19 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters lie on the ground after police opened fire to disperse an anti-coup demonstration in Mandalay on March 3.Hide Caption 20 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarSchoolteachers wear traditional hats while participating in an anti-coup demonstration in Mandalay on March 3.Hide Caption 21 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA soldier stands next to a detained man during a demonstration in Mandalay on March 3.Hide Caption 22 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarAnti-coup protesters run in Yangon on March 3. One of them discharged a fire extinguisher to counter the impact of tear gas fired by police.Hide Caption 23 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarAn anti-coup protester writes vital emergency information of another protester on his arm in Yangon.Hide Caption 24 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarPolice run toward protesters to disperse a demonstration in Yangon on March 3.Hide Caption 25 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA citizen of Myanmar living in India burns a poster of Myanmar’s military chief during a protest in New Delhi on March 3.Hide Caption 26 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarMedics help supply oxygen to a protester who was exposed to tear gas in Yangon on March 3.Hide Caption 27 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters flee after tear gas was fired during a demonstration in Yangon on March 1.Hide Caption 28 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters smoke behind shields during a demonstration in Yangon on March 1.Hide Caption 29 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters in Yangon run away from tear gas on March 1.Hide Caption 30 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarPeople in Yangon take part in a ceremony on February 28 to remember those who have been killed during demonstrations.Hide Caption 31 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarSoldiers patrol during a protest in Yangon on February 28.Hide Caption 32 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters take cover as they clash with police in Yangon on February 28.Hide Caption 33 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters erect barricades during a demonstration in Yangon on February 28.Hide Caption 34 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarPolice charge at anti-coup protesters in Yangon on February 27.Hide Caption 35 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarAn injured protester receives medical attention in Mandalay after police and military forces cracked down on protests on February 26.Hide Caption 36 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarFactory workers hold placards and shout slogans as they hold an anti-coup protest in Yangon on February 25.Hide Caption 37 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarAnti-coup protesters shout slogans in Yangon on February 25.Hide Caption 38 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA police officer films protesters near the Indonesian Embassy in Yangon on February 24.Hide Caption 39 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarThida Hnin cries during the funeral of her husband, Thet Naing Win, in Mandalay on February 23. He and another protester were fatally shot by security forces during an anti-coup protest.Hide Caption 40 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarPolice stand guard near the US Embassy in Yangon as protesters take part in an anti-coup demonstration on February 22.Hide Caption 41 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters hold signs featuring civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi during a demonstration in Yangon on February 22. Hide Caption 42 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters gather for a demonstration on February 22.Hide Caption 43 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA man is carried after police dispersed protesters in Mandalay on February 20. Hide Caption 44 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA police truck uses a water cannon to disperse protesters in Mandalay on February 20.Hide Caption 45 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA police officer aims a gun toward protesters during a demonstration in Mandalay on February 20.Hide Caption 46 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA protester holds a Suu Kyi poster as he sits in front of police in Yangon on February 19.Hide Caption 47 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters flash the three-fingered salute during a rally in downtown Yangon on February 19.Hide Caption 48 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarFlower tributes and sympathy messages are left in Yangon for Mya Thweh Thweh Khine. The 20-year-old was shot in the head at a protest in Naypyidaw, and she died on February 19.Hide Caption 49 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters block a major road during a demonstration in Yangon on February 17.Hide Caption 50 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarDemonstrators block a Yangon bridge with their cars on February 17.Hide Caption 51 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarBuddhist monks march during an anti-coup protest in Yangon on February 16.Hide Caption 52 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA Suu Kyi banner is displayed during demonstrations in Yangon on February 15.Hide Caption 53 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarSoldiers carry barricades in Yangon on February 15.Hide Caption 54 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarElected members of Parliament wave to protesters in Yangon as police surround the headquarters of Suu Kyi’s political party, the National League for Democracy, on February 15.Hide Caption 55 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarMedics clear the way as an injured protester is carried away for treatment in Mandalay, Myanmar, on February 15.Hide Caption 56 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarPeople gather around an armored vehicle in Yangon on February 14.Hide Caption 57 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarYoung people in Yangon take part in an anti-coup hip-hop performance on February 14.Hide Caption 58 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters demonstrate in Yangon on February 14.Hide Caption 59 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA child runs alongside an armored vehicle in Yangon on February 14.Hide Caption 60 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters march through the city of Shwebo on February 13.Hide Caption 61 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarMembers of the Myanmar Photographers Association hold up their cameras as they call for Suu Kyi’s release on February 13.Hide Caption 62 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarPolice detain a protester during a demonstration in Mawlamyine on February 12.Hide Caption 63 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarFarmers ride a tractor with a Suu Kyi poster during a demonstration in Thongwa on February 12.Hide Caption 64 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA protester dressed as Lady Justice makes a three-finger salute as she takes part in a demonstration in Yangon on February 11.Hide Caption 65 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters demonstrate in Bagan, a UNESCO World Heritage site, on February 11.Hide Caption 66 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarGen. Min Aung Hlaing, the country’s military leader, makes a televised statement on February 11. He announced that more than 23,000 prisoners were set to be granted amnesty and released that day. It was unclear what offenses the prisoners were convicted of.Hide Caption 67 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarBodybuilders take part in a protest in Yangon on February 11.Hide Caption 68 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarPeople hold up letters that spell “get out dictators” during a demonstration at Inle Lake on February 11.Hide Caption 69 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA protester carries a child during a march in Yangon on February 10.Hide Caption 70 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarWomen in wedding gowns holds up anti-coup placards in Yangon on February 10.Hide Caption 71 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA police officer aims a gun during clashes with protesters in the capital of Naypyidaw on February 9.Hide Caption 72 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA protester pleads for police to refrain from using tear gas against demonstrators in Yangon on February 9.Hide Caption 73 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarPolice fire water cannons at protesters in Naypyidaw on February 9.Hide Caption 74 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters gather in Yangon on February 8.Hide Caption 75 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters flash three-fingered salutes as they face rows of riot police in Naypyidaw on February 8.Hide Caption 76 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarHospital workers show three-finger salutes during a demonstration in Yangon on February 7.Hide Caption 77 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarA rally takes place in Yangon on February 7.Hide Caption 78 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters shout slogans in Yangon on February 7.Hide Caption 79 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarProtesters give roses to riot police in Yangon on February 6.Hide Caption 80 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarYangon residents bang objects to show support for Suu Kyi and her party on February 5. Hide Caption 81 of 82 Photos: Unrest in MyanmarSoldiers block a road near Myanmar’s Parliament on February 2, a day after the coup.Hide Caption 82 of 82‘A slaughter ground’Khin Myo Chit’s death has come as a shock even amid the relentless stream of deaths and arrests in Myanmar.The doctor who received her body said he had lost count of the number of dead and injured that have passed through his clinic. The streets of Mandalay have become “like a slaughter ground” with security forces shooting at “anything they see,” he said. “What they are doing is not cracking down the protest, now they are shooting randomly in the neighborhoods, it’s not safe anymore even in our own houses with locked doors,” the doctor said. They are asking houses to open for them, and do as they like.”The doctor said hospital workers were hiding bodies to keep them safe from soldiers so they could be handed back to the families.The military has violated international humanitarian law by occupying hospitals and targeting medics at work. Ambulance workers have been beaten and detained, and there have been numerous reports of security forces stopping ambulances and taking away the injured. In one case that horrified the country and international community, the military exhumed the body of a young protester shot dead in Mandalay to perform an autopsy, before cementing back over her grave. The Myanmar Police Force said it needed to investigate the death of 19-year-old Angel, but her family had not consented to an autopsy.Myanmar’s military has not yet officially commented on Khin Myo Chit’s death, but has repeatedly defended security forces’ response to the protesters, saying they use minimal force. UN officials, however, have said the military’s actions against civilians “likely meet the threshold for crimes against humanity.” United Nations Special Rapporteur on human rights in Myanmar, Tom Andrews, said Thursday the international response to the military coup in Myanmar is “falling short” of what’s needed to avoid further turmoil, and urged UN member states to hold an emergency summit.Terrified and uncertain, these families crossed mountains to escape Myanmar's deadly junta“The limited sanctions imposed by member states do not cut the junta’s access to revenue that help sustain its illegal activities, and the slow pace of diplomacy is out of step with the scale of the crisis,” Andrews said. It came after the United States and United Kingdom announced sanctions against military-owned conglomerates as part of further measures targeting the Myanmar military regime. The US designated Myanmar Economic Holdings Public Company Limited (MEHL) and Myanmar Economic Corporation Limited (MEC), which control large sectors of the country’s economy, including alcohol, cigarettes, consumer goods and mining and banking. The UK sanctioned the MEHL over evidence it said the company contributed funds to support the military in its campaign of ethnic cleansing against the Rohingya in 2017.
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