At least 12 killed as civilian leader vows to resist

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Death toll of crackdown on Myanmar's anti-coup protesters continues to rise

Reports on social media also said three people were shot dead on Friday night in Yangon, where residents for the past week have been defying the curfew to come out onto the streets.

"They are acting like they are in a war zone, with unarmed people", said Mandalay-based activist Myat Thu.

At least two people were shot dead in Myanmar's largest city on Sunday as security forces continued their violent crackdown on protesters following last month's military coup.

In condemnation of the actions taken by Myanmar's military, Director of Foreign Assets Control Andrea Gacki said, "The indiscriminate violence by Burma's security forces against peaceful protesters is unacceptable".

At least seven people were killed Saturday during anti-coup protests in Myanmar, as security forces continue to use deadly force against peaceful demonstrators.

A truck driver in Chauk, a town in the central Magwe Region, also died after being shot in the chest by police, a family friend said.

The country of Myanmar has been in its darkest period since the military ousted civilian leader Auung San Suu Kyi from power.

Mahn Win Khaing Than, who is in hiding along with senior officials from the ruling National League for Democracy Party, posted online: "This is the darkest moment of the nation, but the moment of the dawn is close".

Two deaths by gunfire were reported in Yangon's Thaketa township, where a protest being held outside a police station was dispersed.

Britain urged its citizens to leave Myanmar on Friday as security forces cracked down on more protests against the junta, forcing patients out of a hospital in the west of the country and arresting a Polish journalist.

"In order to form a federal democracy, which all ethnic brothers who have been suffering various kinds of oppressions from the dictatorship for decades really desired, this revolution is the chance for us to put our efforts together".

The acting leader of Myanmar's parallel civilian government says it will seek to give people the legal right to defend themselves.

His shooting and that of another student who died a few weeks later sparked widespread protests against the military government known as the 8-8-88 campaign, because they peaked in August that year.

On Thursday state-run media announced that the Arakan Army (AA) - which fights for autonomy for the ethnic Rakhine people in northern Rakhine state - was no longer considered a terrorist organisation.

On February 1 this year, the generals overthrew her government and detained Suu Kyi and many of her cabinet colleagues, claiming fraud in the November elections.

Soldiers have been occupying hospitals and universities across Myanmar as they try to quash a civil disobedience movement that started with government employees like doctors and teachers but has expanded into a general striky.

The move comes after Thomas Andrews, the United Nations special rapporteur on human rights in Myanmar, gave a stark assessment of the crisis.

The country is "controlled by a murderous, illegal regime" that was likely committing 'crimes against humanity, ' Andrews told the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

The UK Foreign Office on Friday said in a statement that political tension and unrest is widespread since the military takeover and level of violence is increasing.

It said Seoul would suspend defence exchanges, ban arms exports, limit exports of other strategic items, reconsider development aid and grant humanitarian exemptions allowing Myanmar nationals to stay in South Korea until the situation improved.

Junta spokesman Zaw Min Tun said the detained chief minister of Yangon admitted giving Suu Kyi $600,000 (£430,000) in cash, along with more than 11 kilograms ($680,000 worth) of gold.

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