photo by jon nicholson

feature story - Report, Statements Address Plight of Burma's Political Prisoners

may 13th, 2009

Amid recent news reports detailing the continued detention and worsening health of Burmese leader Aung San Suu Kyi, Western media, governing bodies, international and local NGOs have issued statements calling for immediate aid to Burmese political prisoners. On May 11, the Thailand-based Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP) released a report outlining the hardships faced by these prisoners, entitled: "Burma's Prisons and Labor Camps: Silent Killing Fields." Following this, the EU issued a statement calling on the Burmese regime to provide Suu Kyi with proper medical attention. On May 13, Amnesty International released a statement condemning the lack of care given to political prisoners.

At present, the Burmese military government is estimated to detain nearly 2,100 political prisoners. Human rights advocates assert that the regime routinely uses sham trials to jail pro-democracy activists for extended periods, and that once in jail, they are subject to torture, forced labor, and are refused proper health care. Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi has been under house arrest for 13 of the past 19 years. Last week, she was refused medical attention by the military government despite reports of declining health.

 

See below for links to the reports and these statements, as well as to a petition in support of Burma's political prisoners.

You can read the AAPP report here.

You can read the Amnesty International statement here.

You can read the EU statement here.

You can read the Washington Post Op-Ed here.

You can sign a petition in support of Burma's political prisoners here.

 

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