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South Korean, Taiwanese makers in Myanmar advised to fly national flags

Fire burning at Chinese-owned factories light up an industrial zone in Hlaingthaya Township, on the outskirts of Yangon, Myanmar, on Monday. Photo by EPA-EFE
Fire burning at Chinese-owned factories light up an industrial zone in Hlaingthaya Township, on the outskirts of Yangon, Myanmar, on Monday. Photo by EPA-EFE

March 15 (UPI) -- South Korean and Taiwanese manufacturers in Myanmar are being urged to fly their respective national flags after Chinese-funded factories were set on fire and a Taiwanese plant reported destruction of property.

South Korean plants have not reported any damages amid rising anti-Chinese sentiment in Myanmar. But, according to Chun Ki-hong, a South Korean professor at Myanmar's Yangon University, Hlaingthaya Township, the area where attacks took place includes "many" South Korean factories, South Korea's TBS Radio reported.

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Chun said he has received "lots of inquiries" from South Korean expatriates. He said he suggested to South Koreans that they place the Korean national flag along factory walls to prevent attacks.

Flags are one measure that is being recommended for South Korean businesses. According to News 1, the South Korean Embassy in Myanmar recently urged Korean nationals to carry identification so that may not be targeted amid the violence.

RELATED Myanmar: Dozens dead, factories set on fire amid coup protests

Chinese-funded factories were reportedly set on fire on Sunday as resentment against Beijing grows in Myanmar. Protesters have claimed Beijing is backing the military coup. Chinese influence in the country also is a source of distrust in the country, according to Radio Free Asia.

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On Saturday, South Korea unveiled its first sanctions against Myanmar's military with a pledge to halt all military equipment exports. Chun said Myanmar's pro-democracy protesters have welcomed Seoul's actions, and the news has "encouraged" the citizenry.

As protests continue in the country, the Taiwanese foreign ministry is urging Taiwanese businesses in Myanmar to fly the Taiwanese flag to protect property, Taiwan's Central News Agency reported Monday.

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Flying the Taiwanese flag will avoid buildings from being mistaken for Chinese property, the ministry said.

A Taiwanese factory that was damaged Sunday included 10 people trapped inside the building. No one was harmed, however, the report said.

Factories funded by China reported injuries. The Chinese Embassy in Myanmar told the Global Times employees were hurt and trapped as factories burned.

RELATED Report: Taiwan's military to build high-altitude missile defense network

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