Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Some analysts also say the charges could herald a broader clampdown on political dissent and pro-democracy figures in anticipation of the election.

Although the government carried out a purge of opposition activists after an uprising led by Buddhist monks in 2007, demonstrators were on the streets again on Monday, handing out leaflets and challenging police officers, soldiers and civilian militias, who were carrying bamboo rods and canes, according to the Burma Partnership, an exile opposition group.

“In terms of security measures they’ve deployed, it’s very difficult for people to come together for a big march,” said Khin Ohmar of the Thailand-based Burma Partnership, who said she was in direct contact with members of the opposition inside the nation, which was formerly known as Burma.

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