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COVID response runs underground in junta-ruled Myanmar

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(Reuters) – For a week, 21-year-old student Phoe Thar has been out by dawn to gather oxygen cylinders from the homes of coronavirus sufferers in Myanmar’s second city of Mandalay. He and fellow volunteers line the tanks up outside charities for filling and returning, trying to save lives in a country whose health system has largely collapsed since a Feb. 1 coup and which now faces its worst surge of COVID-19 infections. Funded by donors on social media, Phoe Thar and his team are part of a growing grassroots effort that bypasses the authorities and echoes the way Myanmar’s people responded to …

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