Urgent Call for Intervention in Myanmar

Attention: open in a new window. Print

Last Updated (Saturday, 03 April 2021 18:27)


– Urgent Call for Intervention in Myanmar –


“A year ago, a wake-up call came from Coronavirus to humanity, the second wake-up call came recently from Myanmar to the people of Asia, if not to humanity”. “Can you sleep in peace when your neighbors are being killed like chickens and birds?”

In response to people’s cry and sufferings, APAY in close collaboration with World Alliance of YMCAs launched an Urgent Call petition to UN Human Rights Council urging urgent intervention in Myanmar, calling for a peaceful restoration of democracy in Myanmar. More than 70 national/territorial YMCAs around the world signed the petition letter alongside like-minded ecumenical organizations and NGOs in our region and beyond. But still, peoples, particularly young people, continue to go out to the streets for peaceful protests amid heightening threats, brutal suppressions and even shootings with bullets.

Ms. Ak Kee, a youth volunteer from Myitkyina YMCA, Kachin State, is still in prison after being arrested during her peaceful protest on a street in the city though Ronnie Lyan, Hakha YMCA General Secretary, was released about 10 days ago. APAY also launched a fund-raising campaign with a view to supporting the Myanmar YMCAs, particularly for those and their families who were arrested and detained during their peaceful protests. For direct donation, kindly visit the weblink connected to the WAY website: https://www.ymca.int/donate/myanmar-2021/

The following is the urgent call letter of World YMCA issued on 17th March, signed by World Alliance of YMCAs, Asia and Pacific Alliance of YMCAs (APAY) and more than 70 national/territorial YMCAs in the world.




17 March 2021

An Open Letter to the UN Human Rights Council and UN member states

The world received the sad news on the first confirmed death from the Myanmar military coup on 19 February 2021. She was shot in the head on February 9 while participating in a peaceful protest in the capital Naypyitaw – just two days before her 20th birthday.

Again on 28 February, security forces in Myanmar fired on peaceful protesters, killing at least 18 people and leaving more than 30 others injured.

Violent suppressions on the part of the police and military continue to increase. A few days later, on 3 March, 38 peaceful demonstrators were shot dead. With little warning, Police and soldiers had opened fire with live rounds.

The news on 8 March reported that three protesters were killed in the northern town of Myitkyina. According to witnesses and photos on Facebook, two of them had gunshot wounds to the head. On 14 March, it was reported that at least 38 protesters across Myanmar were killed in the latest crackdown on the anti-coup movement.

The Assistance Association for Political Prisoners have reported that since the military coup started on 1 February 2021, more than 126 peaceful demonstrators against the military coup have been killed with many more wounded. More than 2,150 people have been arrested, charged or sentenced and many families do not know where and how their loved ones are. We strongly condemn the excessive use of force against peaceful protesters.

We must not allow this situation to continue. We call on the international community to hold the Myanmar military accountable for its violations of human rights, and to pursue justice for the people of Myanmar. We need the unity of the international community to use every tool available to stop this situation.

The UN Human Rights Council's 47 members have voted to adopt a Resolution demanding the "immediate and unconditional" release of political detainees and the restoration of Myanmar's elected government. We urge the Council and its member countries to take stronger measures to restore the rights of the people of Myanmar to elect their government in a democratic process.

As representatives of one of the oldest and largest youth organisations in the world, which has been serving the young people of Myanmar for the past 70 years, we, the undersigned YMCAs, and like-minded organizations and individuals, call on the UN Human Rights Council and its member states to take the right and effective measures to prevent any further sacrifice of innocent lives. We call for the immediate imposition of an arms embargo and targeted economic sanctions against all businesses related to the military, the Generals and their families and proxies, as a response to their violent suppression of peaceful demonstrations against the military coup. Any sale or transfer of military-related equipment to Myanmar could provide the means to further repress the people of Myanmar in violation of international humanitarian and human rights law.

We, the undersigned organizations and individuals, call on the UN Human Rights Council and UN member states to urgently institute every possible intervention measure, including coordinated, global sanctions on Myanmar in response to the February 1, 2021 military coup and the subsequent killing of over 126 peaceful demonstrators by the police and military.

We must act decisively now to prevent more deaths. On behalf of the Signatories below,

Nam Boo Won
General Secretary
Asia and Pacific Alliance of YMCAs
Carlos Sanvee
Secretary General
World Alliance of YMCAs


Add your support to the petition here:




YMCAs around the World

World Alliance of YMCAs

Asia and Pacific Alliance of YMCAs

Africa Alliance of YMCAs

Latin American & Caribbean Alliance of YMCAs

YMCA of Europe


YMCA of Aruba

YMCA of Australia

YMCA of Bahamas

YMCA of Bangladesh

YMCA of Brazil

YMCA of Cameroun

YMCA of Chile

YMCA of Colombia

YMCA of Czech Republic

YMCA of Denmark

YMCA of Dominican Republic

YMCA of El Salvador

YMCA of England & Wales

YMCA of Ethiopia

YMCA of Finland

YMCA of France

YMCA of Germany

YMCA of Ghana

YMCA of Greece

YMCA of Guatemala

YMCA of Honduras

YMCA of Hungary

YMCA of Iceland

YMCA of India

YMCA of Ireland

YMCA of Italy

YMCA of Japan

YMCA of Kenya

YMCA of Kosovo

YMCA of Lebanon

YMCA of Liberia

YMCA of Lithuania

YMCA of Madagascar

YMCA of Moldovia

YMCA of Mongolia

YMCA of Netherlands

YMCA of New Zealand

YMCA of Nigeria

YMCA of North Macedonia

YMCA of Norway

YMCA of Paraguay

YMCA of Peru

YMCA of Philippines

YMCA of Portugal

YMCA of Romania

YMCA of Russia

YMCA of Scotland

YMCA of Senegal

YMCA of Sierra Leone

YMCA of Slovakia

YMCA of South Africa

YMCA of South Korea

YMCA of Spain

YMCA of Sri Lanka

YMCA of Taiwan

YMCA of Transylvania

YMCA of Ukraine

YMCA of Uruguay

YMCA of Zambia

YMCA of Zimbabwe



HorYzon, Switzerland


YMCAs from Canada

YMCA Canada

YMCA Calgary

YMCA of Central East Ontario

YMCA of Cumberland

YMCA of Greater Halifax/Dartmouth

YMCA of Greater Toronto

YMCA of Hamilton/Burlington/Brantford

YMCA of Medicine Hat

YMCA of Niagara

YMCA of Northeastern Ontario

YMCA of Northern Alberta

YMCA of Northern BC

YMCA of Northumberland

YMCA of Okangan

YMCA of Owen Sound Grey Bruce

YMCA of Pictou County

YMCA of Saskatoon

YMCA of Simcoe/Muskoka

YMCA of Southwestern Ontario

YMCA of Three Rivers

YMCA of Timmins

YMCAs of Québec

YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region


Ecumenical Organizations and NGOs in Asia:

WSCF – Asia Pacific

Border Peace School, Korea

Korea Christian Democracy Foundation Saemoonan Torch Forum, Korea

Solidarity of Pastors Seeking Reformation of the Presbyterian Church of Korea

Korea Christian Cooperation for Social Development

Fund for Life in Korea

Forum of Korean Christian Intellectuals on Church and Society, Korea

Goyang Peace and Future Forum, Korea

Korea Association for Asian Rural Mission

The Korean Methodist Rural Mission training Center



Renata Namnum

Yungsuk Chun

Daya Sagar Shrestha

William Nokrek

Jiseok Jung

Kaustuv Bandyopadhyay

George Bernardsha

Dorothy Ong

Amelia Cheong

Ahn Youngsoo

Chung jae Lee

Christine Liu

Aakil Lam

Rory Lui

Jojo Wong

Wong Peter

Maite Iriberri

Ulysse Desmarest

Samantha Hui

Wong Ching Yin,

Tony Sze

- End