Woman shot in the head during Myanmar anti-coup protest dies

Demonstrators protest the death of Mya Thwate Thwate Khaing in Mandalay last week

Earlier, security forces in Myanmar ratcheted up their pressure against anti-coup protesters, using water cannons, tear gas, slingshots and rubber bullets against demonstrators and striking dock workers in Mandalay, the nation's second-largest city.

Ko Aung and the doctor said a second man was shot in the chest and died later of his wound.

Among those arrested are railway workers, civil servants and bank staff who have walked off their jobs as part of a civil disobedience campaign aimed at crippling the army's ability to govern. Opponents of the coup are sceptical of the army's promise to hold a new election and hand power to the victor.

Mya Thwate Thwate Khaing, who turned 20 last Thursday as she lay unconscious in a hospital bed, was shot in the head during a demonstration in the capital last week.

Demonstrators also gathered elsewhere in Yangon, chanting and holding placards and images of Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, whose democratically elected government was overthrown.

The army says one policeman has died of injuries sustained in a protest. Demonstrators are sceptical of the army's promise to hold a new election and hand power to the victor.

"I feel that the bullet that hit Mya Thwate Thwate Khaing's head has also hit our heads".

The woman was in critical condition after the shooting, which took place on February 9 in the capital Naypyitaw.

"We are heartbroken and can not talk about it much now", her brother said, adding that a funeral service would be held on Sunday.

The demonstrators are demanding the restoration of the elected government and the release of Suu Kyi and others.

Suu Kyi came to power after her National League for Democracy party won a 2015 election, but the generals retained substantial power under the constitution, which was adopted under a military regime. The electoral commission had dismissed the fraud complaints.

The protests have been more peaceful than the bloodily suppressed demonstrations during almost 50 years of direct military rule up to 2011.

"We reiterate our calls on the Burmese military to refrain from violence against peaceful protesters", spokesman Ned Price told reporters on Friday.

A small group of protesters were forcefully dispersed by police and military wielding batons in the northern city of Myitkyina on Friday, according to video posted online and witnesses.

US President Joe Biden last week announced the United States will sanction Myanmar's military leaders following the coup.

Condemnation of the violence has been fierce, and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has held talks with allied countries in recent days to press for a firm worldwide response. There is little history of Myanmar's generals, with closer ties to China and to Russian Federation, giving in to Western pressure.

Junta leader Min Aung Hlaing was already under sanctions from Western countries following the 2017 crackdown on the Muslim Rohingya minority.

Suu Kyi faces a charge of violating a Natural Disaster Management Law as well as illegally importing six walkie-talkie radios.

A 15-metre-long banner with artwork depicting the moment she was shot was hung off a bridge in Yangon, while some protesters have carried photos of her as they march.

Almost 550 people have been arrested, charged or sentenced since the coup, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP), with 500 still behind bars.