Myanmar's security forces shot dead a 7-year-old girl in the city of Mandalay on Tuesday, the youngest victim yet in the military's bloody crackdown on civilian opposition to the February 1 coup.
The young girl was killed in her home during a military raid, according to advocacy group Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP) and Reuters news agency.
Citing relatives, local news outlet Myanmar Now reported the girl, named Khin Myo Chit, was shot while sitting in her father's lap after security forces kicked down the door to the family's home. Soldiers asked the father if everyone in the family was present in the house -- when the father said yes, they accused him of lying and shot at him, hitting the girl instead, Myanmar Now reported, quoting the victim's older sister.
The ruthless killing of a child in her father's arms fits a pattern of abuse and indiscriminate use of deadly violencefrom Myanmar's security forces that has targeted not only unarmed protesters and opponents to the coup, but bystanders, civilians in their homes, and children.
Myanmar was thrown into turmoil when the military, headed by coup-leader Gen. Min Aung Hlaing, seized power last month, overturning a democratic election, detaining civilian leader and Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, and establishing a ruling military junta.