Myanmar's ruling junta declared martial law in two townships of Yangon, where 34 protesters were killed Sunday, The Associated Press reports, citing the independent Assistance Association for Political Prisoners. Four more protesters were killed elsewhere in Myanmar, making Sunday one of the deadliest days since the military seized control of the country six weeks ago. The epicenter of Sunday's crackdown was Hlaing Thar Yar township, were 22 people were killed and more than dozen more injured.
The nonviolent resistance to the military takeover of Myanmar has involved general strikes and large marches, and the military has started responding with more force and expanded authority. The junta's announcement of martial law late Sunday, on state broadcaster MRTV, appears to be the first use of that phrase since the coup, AP reports.
Protesters have been trying out new tactics amid the crackdown, including holding candlelight vigils in the dark of night and using fire extinguisher spray, flash demonstrations, and billowing laundry to avoid capture.
Sunday's deaths "appeared to raise beyond 100 the number of civilians killed by security forces since the coup," AP reports. "The actual death toll is likely higher, as police apparently seized some bodies, and some victims have had serious gunshot wounds that medical staff at makeshift clinics would be hard-pressed to treat."