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Work at copper mines run by Chinese companies jointly with Myanmar’s military in the Sagaing region has halted as thousands of laborers across the country have joined the anti-coup protest, according to local media reports.

Around 300 mineworkers at the Kyisintaung copper mines in the Sagaing region in Monwya district have stopped working since February 5 and joined the civil disobedience movement against the coup.

The mining activity at the mine has stopped at the copper mines since Monday. The copper mines are a joint venture between the military-owned Myanma Economic Holdings Public Co Ltd (MEHL) and Myanmar Yang Tse Copper Mining, a subsidiary of China-based Wanbao Mining Limited.

The Letpadaung Taung copper mine in Sagaing’s Salingyi Township, another joint venture between MEHL and Wanbao, also halted operations after thousands of employees joined the protest on February 8. Letpadaung has been estimated to be one of the biggest copper mines in Southeast Asia, as per reports. Around 7,000 workers from Myanmar are estimated to be employed at Kyisintaung and Letpadaung mines combined.

On February 1, 2020, the Myanmar military ousted the civilian government of Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi and prevented the recently elected lawmakers from opening a new session of Parliament. 

The protesters also informed that the protests will continue until the elected government is reinstated in Myanmar.

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