A Miss Universe contestant used her spotlight to plead for help for the people of Myanmar as they're being killed in their hundreds.
Thuzar Wint Lwin, Myanmar’s contestant, spoke out about the military killings at the event on May 16, at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida.
She said: "Our people are dying and being shot by the military every day. I would like to urge everyone to speak about Myanmar.
"As Miss Universe Myanmar since the coup, I have been speaking out as much as I can."
The beauty queen didn't win the contest but she won in the Best National Costume category, in which she held up a placard that said: “Pray for Myanmar."
Her costume was based on Chin culture from northwestern Myanmar, where fighting has raged in recent days between the army and anti-junta militia fighters.
Fellow competitor, Miss Singapore Bernadette Belle Wu Ong, also joined the protest as she wore a dress inspired by Singapore’s national flag that read 'Stop Asian Hate.'
The 27-year-old followed up the event with an Instagram post, captioned: "What is this platform for if I can’t use it to send a strong message of resistance against prejudice and violence!
"Thank you #MissUniverse for giving me this opportunity!”
At least 790 people have been killed by security forces since the coup took over Myanmar in February, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners activist group.
It says over 5,000 people have been arrested, with some 4,000 still detained – including several celebrities.
Last week, the country's former Miss Universe contestant, Htar Htet Htet posed for a photo with an assault rifle on Facebook as she declared she's "ready to pay with her life" fighting the country's military junta.
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She wrote: "The time has come to fight back. Whether you hold a weapon, pen, keyboard or donate money to the pro-democracy movement, everyone must do their bit for the revolution to succeed.
"I will fight back as much as I can. I am ready and prepared to give up everything. I am even ready to pay with my life."
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