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Miss Myanmar asked for prayers for Myanmar at Miss Universe pageant

The Miss Universe contestant called attention to the ongoing political crisis in her home country

Anti-coup protesters march during a demonstration in Yangon, Myanmar.
In this May 12, 2021, file photo, anti-coup protesters march during a demonstration in Yangon, Myanmar.
Associated Press

This weekend at the Miss Universe pageant, Miss Myanmar Ma Thuzar Wint Lwin asked audiences to “Pray for Myanmar” with her outfit in the national costume segment, as Deseret News reported. Lwin’s costume came from the Chin region, the area currently under attack by military forces.

Miss Universe Myanmar was one of several contestants to call attention to social and political issues with their national costumes.

Myanmar’s protests against the military coup

In February, Myanmar’s military staged a coup, seizing power from the president. Millions of people took to the streets to peacefully protest the new government and have been met with lethal force, Al Jazeera and Reuters report.

Recent attacks in the Chin region

Near the border with India, Chin state is a rural and mountainous region, one of the least developed areas of the country, Al Jazeera says. The area has become a fierce battleground of resistance to the junta and military government.

  • Armed fighting began in Mindat and around Chin in late April over the military’s refusal to release seven detained youth, says Al Jazeera.

Last week, the junta declared martial law in Mindat, then began a three-day-long siege against the town on May 13. Military forces have attacked with ground troops and helicopters, using artillery, rocket grenades and automatic machine guns, Al Jazeera reported.

According to CHRO and Al Jazeera, the military has even used youth as human shields while attacking. Civilian Defense Forces in Mindat have countered the attack with homemade hunting rifles and makeshift explosives.

According to Fox News, both the British and U.S. embassies in Myanmar have expressed concerns over the recent developments in Chin state.