Aerobics instructor teaches class as Myanmar coup 'unfolds behind her'

Woman's aerobics video goes viral after it appeared to capture the moment when Myanmar's military staged coup. Credit: Khing Hnin Wai/Facebook

A video of a dance fitness instructor has gone viral as it appears to show the moment Myanmar's military staged a coup - all happening in the background of the class.

Myanmar has been taken over by the military after the armed forces alleged voter fraud in last November's election and the government's failure to postpone the election because of the Covid crisis.

State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and president Win Myint are reported to be detained by the army.

At the time of the takeover, a dancer reported to be Khing Hnin Wai, was busy filming herself performing an energetic exercise routine to upbeat music - unaware of what appears to be happening behind her.

The video, which has been posted on Facebook by Khing Hnin Wai, shows black SUVs driving though a security checkpoint which reportedly leads to the Assembly of the Union in the capital of Naypyitaw.

Since being posted on Monday, the video has racked up more than 80,000 views.

Military-controlled Myawaddy TV announced on Monday morning the military had taken control of the country for one year.

It said once a new election is held at the end of the one-year state of emergency, the military would hand power to the winner.

Aung San Suu Kyi’s political party, the National League for Democracy, is urging to oppose the military takeover and warned against any return to “military dictatorship”.

  • Video report by ITV News Asia Correspondent Debi Edward

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab tweeted their condemnation of the action on Monday.

Mr Johnson said: “I condemn the coup and unlawful imprisonment of civilians, including Aung San Suu Kyi, in Myanmar. The vote of the people must be respected and civilian leaders released.”

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab tweeted: “The UK condemns the state of emergency in Myanmar and the unlawful detention of figures in the Civilian Government and civil society by the military.

Aung San Suu Kyi Credit: AP

“The democratically expressed wishes of the people of Myanmar must be respected, and the National Assembly peacefully re-convened.”

A spokesperson for the UK government said: “The UK condemns the state of emergency imposed by the Myanmar military on 1 February, and the detention of members of the civilian Government and civil society, including State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and President Win Myint. The UK calls on the military to respect the rule of law and human rights, and release those unlawfully detained.

“We need to see the peaceful reconvening of the National Assembly, respecting the results of the November 2020 general election and the expressed wishes of the people of Myanmar."