Monks Lead Largest Protest Yet

Tens of thousands fill streets as fears of crackdown grow
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 24, 2007 6:57 AM CDT
Buddhist monks march during a protest against the military government in Yangon, Myanmar, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2007. About 20,000 Buddhist monks and citizens demonstrated against Myanmar's military junta...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Protests by Buddhist monks in Myanmar continue to surge, with today's the largest against the ruling military junta in 20 years, Reuters reports. Tens of thousands of monks and residents packed the streets of Yangon and other cities. So far, military leaders have been quiet, but fears are growing of a crackdown similar to one in 1988 that killed 3,000, BBC says.

Whatever happens is likely to happen soon, as the monks are "getting braver every day," according to a local diplomat. The protests began a month ago over soaring fuel prices but have since become a general indictment against the government's rule. The US and Myanmar's neighbors, fed up with the slow pace of reforms, expressed  sympathy for the protesters.