5 people jump from Myanmar building to escape police; 2 die

BANGKOK (AP) — Five people jumped from an apartment building in Yangon, Myanmar’s largest city, to escape government security forces who were raiding the building, and at least two died, according to government and media reports Wednesday.

During the raid on Tuesday night, security officers said in a radio conversation that five people — four men and a woman — jumped from the apartment building before they could be apprehended. They said three died and the two others had life-threatening injuries.

In a statement Wednesday, however, the government said the incident involved eight people. It said two died, three were hospitalized and three others were arrested. The police precinct responsible for the raid refused to comment.

A neighbor told local media that five people had climbed onto the roof in an attempt to escape the security forces and jumped into an alley after they had nowhere else to go.

The government said the security forces conducted the raid after hearing that explosives might be in the apartment, and seized various items including firecrackers, gunpowder and “handmade grenades.”

Four explosions were reported in Yangon earlier in the day, but it was unclear whether they were related to the raid.

Since the military ousted the elected government of Aung San Suu Kyi in February and seized power, there has been a groundswell of protests around the country.

More than 900 people have been killed by the authorities since the takeover, many in anti-government protests, according to a tally kept by the independent Assistance Association for Political Prisoners. Casualties are also rising among the military and police as armed resistance grows in both urban and rural areas.

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