Burma News

'Cold Wave' likely to sweep Burma

A 'Cold Wave' is likely to sweep Burma by the last week of January because of a change in the course of the winds, an official at Burma's Meteorological department...

Indonesia may deport Burmese and Bangladeshi boatpeople

Indonesia has indicated it is holding discussions to send back nearly 200 Burmese and Bangladeshi boatpeople, stranded off Sabang Island near Aceh province in early January, a Foreign Affairs Ministry...

Thailand Urged to Stop Pushing Refugees Out to Sea

A US-based refugee rights group has called on the Thai authorities to stop abandoning Rohingya boat people at sea.

Thailand’s New PM Seeks Reconciliation

Thailand’s new prime minister has vowed to reconcile the country after more than two years of instability by promoting justice, political reform and economic revival.

Strengthening relations with neighboring countries remains at the heart of our foreign policy.
— Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva


Abhisit Needs to Set a New Course on Burma

Burmese are hopeful that Thailand’s new prime minister will be able to steer his country’s Burma policy in the right direction.

Burma Situation Affects Region: Thai PM

Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva outlines the Thai-Burma relationship in statements to journalists and the diplomatic corps.

Non-military Pilots to be Trained in Rangoon

A pilot ground training course that will allow non-military applicants to obtain commercial pilots’ licenses is due to open soon at Hmawbi Air Force Base.

Human Rights in Burma Deteriorating: Report

In its latest annual report, Human Rights Watch says that Burma’s ruling junta has stepped up its human rights abuses over the past year.

Burmese Schoolteacher and Family Repatriated

The founder of a primary school for Burmese children in southern Thailand has been arrested after being repatriated to Burma.
Political Prisoner Zaw Naing Htwe In Danger Of Losing His Life


Media statement: for immediate release

15 January 2009

Political prisoner Zaw Naing Htwe is in danger of losing his life at Four Mile Labor Camp near Taungoo Town in Pegu Division, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (Burma). He is currently being held in iron shackles whilst being forced to perform hard labor by the authorities. He is not being given enough food and water.

On December 15 2008 he was sentenced to 9 years in prison, charged under sections 41/b and 42 of the prisons procedural code, related to exchanging correspondence in prison. He received a letter from his elder brother, 88 Generation Students Group member Kyaw Kyaw Htwe aka Marky, on 2 February 2008 during a prison visit.

In the first week of January 2009 Zaw Naing Htwe was transferred to Four Mile Labor Camp, 175 miles from Taungoo Town in Pegu Division.

Tate Naing, Secretary of the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (Burma), said, "When the regime transfers political prisoners to labor camps, they are intentionally trying to kill them.
There is little chance that political prisoners will return home after being in the labor camps."

In 2008, at least 17 political prisoners were transferred to labor camps around Burma. In October 1990, many monks participated in the boycott, pattam nikkujjana kamma or "overturning the bowl", refusing to accept alms from members of the armed forces and their families. As punishment some were transferred to labor camps, and 19 monks died there.

ABFSU mumber sentenced 104 years in jail

Media Statement - for immediate release

18 January 2009

ABFSU member sentenced to 104 years in jail

A member of the Upper Burma (Mandalay) branch of the All Burma Federation of Students Unions has been sentenced to a total of 104 years in jail, the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners(Burma) can confirm. Bo Min Yu Ko aka Phyo Gyi, in his early 20s, was arrested on 18 September 2008. He was handed his final sentence on 3 January by Obo Prison Court in Mandalay Division. He was charged under many different sections of law, including 6 counts under Section 13/1 of the Immigration Act alone. Bo Min Yu Ko was not allowed to have a defense lawyer and his family were not allowed to attend his court hearing.

"This is yet another harsh and cruel sentence handed down by the regime's kangaroo courts. The courts are not independent and simply follow orders from the regime. Criminals sentenced on drug charges are often given relatively light sentences, but political activists are given very long terms of imprisonment," said Bo Kyi, Joint-Secretary of AAPP.

Since the recent spate of sentencing began in October 2008, at least 280 political activists have been sentenced. Bo Min Yu Ko's 104-year sentence is the harshest punishment handed out so far.

"Political activists are systematically denied their legal and human rights. Bo Min Yu Ko had no chance to prepare a defence. Until now, he has not been allowed to meet with his family," said Bo Kyi. "ASEAN leaders mustn't bury their heads in the sand. The forthcoming ASEAN summit is the perfect opportunity for them to discuss this issue frankly with the military leaders. They must call on them to immediately release all political prisoners, including Daw Aung San
Suu Kyi, and start an open dialogue for national reconciliation."


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