Opponents of Myanmar's coup planned more protests on Saturday as international pressure mounted on the military junta to stop its crackdown on democracy supporters, and Asian neighbors joined Western countries in condemning the deadly force.

Two people were killed when soldiers opened fire overnight in the ruby-mining town of Mogok in the north of the country, the Myanmar Now news portal reported. That brought the death toll to 237 since the Feb. 1 coup, according to a tally by the activist group Association of Assistance for Political Prisoners.

International pressure grows on Myanmar generals as two more killed in shootings

The bloodshed has not quelled anger over the overthrow of the elected government and the arrest of its leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, although some protest organizers say they have to adapt their tactics.

"We protest where there are no police or military, then when we hear that they are coming, we quickly disperse," activist Kyaw Min Htike told Reuters from the southern city of Dawei.

"I don't want to lose a single one of my comrades, but we will protest in any way we can until our revolution prevails."

In other cities, people have been gathering at night to hold candles and protest posters and pose for photographs before vanishing.

On Friday, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres condemned what he denounced as continued brutal violence by the military. A "firm and unified international response" was urgently needed, according to his spokeswoman.

UN Rapporteur Tom Andrews called for sanctions on what he called the generals' ruthless attacks on the people.

"The world must respond by cutting off its access to money and guns. Now," he wrote on Twitter.

The US House of Representatives passed legislation condemning the coup and lawmakers condemned the increasingly tough tactics against protesters.

Authorities have tightened restrictions on Internet services, making information increasingly difficult to verify, and have cracked down on private media.

Ambassadors from Western countries condemned the violence as "immoral and indefensible" in the Hlaing Tharyar industrial district of the commercial capital Yangon, where dozens of people died over several days after Chinese-owned clothing factories were set on fire last weekend. .

"Internet blackouts and media crackdowns will not hide the abominable actions of the military," they said in a statement on Friday.

Asian anger

Asian neighbors, who for years have adhered to a code of not criticizing the internal problems of others, have also come out to urge an end to the violence.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo, in some of the strongest remarks yet from a regional leader, said he would ask Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah of Brunei, president of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), to convene a meeting. urgent.

"Indonesia urges that the use of violence in Myanmar be stopped immediately so that there are no more victims," ​​Jokowi said in a virtual speech.

"The safety and well-being of people must be the highest priority."

Backing Indonesia's call for a meeting, Malaysian Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said he was dismayed by the persistent use of deadly violence against unarmed civilians.

Philippine Foreign Minister Teodoro Locsin said ASEAN had to act.

Singapore has also spoken out against the violence and the coup that unleashed it, calling for Suu Kyi's release.

But the military has shown no signs of being swayed and has defended its inauguration, which derailed a slow transition to democracy in a country that has been ruled by the military for most of its post-independence history.

He says the November 8 elections won by Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy were fraudulent and his claims were ignored by the electoral commission. He promised a new election but did not set a date.

Suu Kyi, 75, faces charges of bribery and other crimes that could result in her being expelled from politics and imprisoned if convicted.

Her attorney says the charges are false. The Nobel Peace Prize winner, who has campaigned for democracy in Myanmar for three decades, is being held at an undisclosed location.