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Nationalist monks rally over double-murder verdict

At a rally in Yangon on ​Dec. 29 organized by hardline Buddhist group Ma Ba Tha, a prominent nationalist monk, U Pamaukka, urges the release of two young Burmese migrant workers. (Photo by Steve Tickner)

YANGON, Myanmar -- One of Myanmar's leading Buddhist nationalist monks, U Pamaukka, made a startling vow before several hundred protesters gathered in a sports field on Dec. 29.

     He would leave the monkhood and join the army if that was what it would take to defend the lives of two Burmese migrant workers who had just been sentenced to death in Thailand, he said.

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