Burma Campaign UK is today calling on Hugo Swire MP, British Foreign Office Minister with responsibility for Burma, to pressure Burma’s military-backed government to agree to the formation of a joint domestic and international board, with the involvement of the UN, to investigate how many innocent civilians and political activists remain in Burma’s jails and secure their immediate releases.
To achieve peace and national reconciliation in Burma, there must be an unconditional release of all political prisoners. To draw attention to the remaining political prisoners, Burma Campaign UK is highlighting the case of a different political prisoner every month. Political prisoners for this month are Brang Yung and Lahpai Gam, who are innocent Kachin farmers but were arrested under suspicion of being soldiers from the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) and carrying out bombing operations near Myitkyina.
They were arrested in June 2012 and charged under Article 17/1 of the Unlawful Association Act. Their trials are still continuing at Myitkyina court in Kachin State. They were brutally tortured during interrogations; they were repeatedly beaten, forced to drink water mixed with fuel, burnt and forced to have sexual intercourse with each other.
“This is a horrific example of how the military-backed government in Burma treats its own people, especially ethnic civilians,” said Wai Hnin, Campaigns Officer at Burma Campaign UK. “President Thein Sein must allow the formation of a joint domestic and international board to investigate how many people like Brang Yung and Lahpai Gam are wrongfully put into jails.”
Burma Campaign UK supporters are being asked to write a letter to Foreign Office Minister Hugo Swire MP asking him to pressure the military-backed government to allow the formation of a joint domestic and international board with the involvement of the UN to investigate the numbers of political prisoners remaining in Burma’s jails and secure their releases.