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Armed soldiers patrol Yangon

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Armed soldiers patrol Yangon


Thousands of heavily-armed soldiers are patrolling the streets of Yangon, with no sign of the anti-junta demonstrations of recent weeks. About half the shops are open but all the internet cafes are shut and mobile phone networks are still disrupted.

Police are stopping and searching people for cameras that may be used to smuggle out images.

The military’s top general, Than Shwe, is due to meet UN special envoy Ibrahim Gambari on Tuesday. Gambari was only allowed to meet junior government members at the weekend.

On Sunday he held talks with opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi who is under house arrest. He was the first foreigner permitted to meet her for 10 months.

The regime has acknowledged around a dozen deaths during last week’s repression. Diplomats and activists say the number is almost certainly much higher.

In a sign the junta is confident the revolt is over, Shwedagon Pagoda has been re-opened. Myanmar’s holiest shrine was one of the focal points for the protests, led by thousands of Buddhist monks.

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