Free remaining political prisoners: BCUK

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While welcoming the release of 25 Burmese political prisoners last week, Burma Campaign UK (BCUK) said the international community should demand the release of all remaining prisoners immediately.

Prisoner releases have been going on for nearly two years, it noted, prior to the formation of the new government.

It said more pressure is needed on the military-backed government to agree to the formation of a joint domestic and international board with the involvement of the U.N. to investigate how many political prisoners remain in Burma’s jails.

“The release of political prisoners is very welcome but these releases have been going on since November 2010 at a very slow pace. It can’t continue like this,” said Wai Hnin, the campaigns officer at BCUK. “To secure the releases of all political prisoners, we need a proper mechanism such as the formation of a joint domestic and international board with the help of the U.N. to investigate how many activists in Burma remain in jail and make sure that none of them are left behind in jails.”

Each month, BCUK highlights the case of different political prisoners. The political prisoner for this month, it said, is Myint Aye, who was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2008.

Myint Aye, 62, worked to educate people about human rights and promote the issues related to human rights and freedom in Burma. He had been arrested at least six times since 1988 for his activities in promoting human rights and participating in pro-democracy demonstrations. He was arrested in August 2008 and charged with four different counts, including under section 17/1 of the Unlawful Association Act, and sentenced to life imprisonment.

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