"Burma authorities on Saturday briefly detained Win Tin, a veteran opposition leader and the country's former longest serving political prisoner, a friend said.
The 80-year-old former journalist was taken from his home in the morning for questioning but was allowed to return home several hours later, his friend Maung Maung Khin said.
The ruling junta freed Win Tin, a leading member of democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi's opposition party, in September 2008 after almost two decades behind bars.
'He was taken this morning at 10:30 am and the authorities sent him home at 4:00 pm. They took him for questioning because some arrested youths mentioned his name,' Maung Maung Khin told AFP.
'It was meant to harm his dignity.'
Maung Maung Khin said Win Tin's health situation was 'not stable' because he recently had a pacemaker installed, but said that he was now fine and resting at home.
The incident came just three days after the Washington Post published a piece written by Win Tin about Burma's upcoming elections, which the ruling generals have promised to hold in 2010.
The comment piece said that 'the showcase election planned by the military regime makes a mockery of the freedom sought by our people and would make military dictatorship permanent.'"
MORE: "Burma briefly detains Suu Kyi aide: friend" (AFP)