Myanmar's embattled military to hold annual parade on Wednesday

Myanmar's military will stage a large-scale parade later on Wednesday in the capital Naypyidaw. In a break with tradition, the junta has reportedly moved the start time of this year's event from the morning to early evening, citing weather conditions as the reason for the change.

Wednesday marks Armed Forces Day in Myanmar. The parade commemorates the start of the resistance against the Imperial Japanese military's presence in 1945. The resistance group was the precursor to Myanmar's military.

Top general Min Aung Hlaing, who seized power in a coup three years ago, is slated to oversee the military showcase. It will include a formation flight of fighter jets and soldiers' march.

According to recent analysis from the United States Institute of Peace, Myanmar's military lost around 20,000 service members compared with before the coup.

Since last fall, major attacks by pro-democracy forces and ethnic minority armed groups have inflicted heavy losses on the junta's troops, and forced many soldiers to surrender.

In an apparent bid to increase its numbers, the military in February announced mandatory conscription for citizens. The decision prompted many young people to flee to neighboring Thailand or join pro-democracy forces, causing confusion in Myanmar.