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Nun Kneels Before Troops: 'Shoot Me Instead'

Sister Ann Rose Nu Tawng emerges as a hero in Myanmar
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 9, 2021 10:05 AM CST

(Newser) – Her name is Sister Ann Rose Nu Tawng, and the Catholic nun is emerging as a hero in Myanmar's deadly unrest. On Monday, the 45-year-old knelt in front of soldiers about to crack down on protesters in the city of Myitkyina and pleaded with them to hold fire, reports AFP. The moment is captured in this video. “I knelt down ... begging them not to shoot and torture the children, but to shoot me and kill me instead,” she tells the news agency of the confrontation. Her plea fell on deaf ears, however. Soldiers soon opened fire and killed at least two protesters, reports Sky News. "I felt like the world was crashing," she says. "I'm very sad it happened as I was begging them."

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This isn't the sister's first such confrontation. She made a similar plea on Feb. 28 in what has been called Myanmar's "Tiananmen moment," per Sky News. Video from NBC News shows her kneeling in front of police in riot gear on that day. "I decided to die," she told Sky News after the incident. "I was asking and begging them not to do it, and I told them the protesters didn't commit any [crime]." It's a safe bet that Monday's confrontation won't be her last. "I have thought myself dead already since" the February incident, she tells AFP. "I can't stand and watch without doing anything." (Read more Myanmar stories.)

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