Burma

Myanmar: UN chief welcomes release of dozens of political prisoners

On Tuesday 23 July 2013, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the release of 73 political prisoners in Myanmar, as well as the announcement by the country’s leader that the rest will be freed by the end of the year. The military junta, which ruled Myanmar for decades, had long denied the existence of political prisoners, but hundreds of dissidents have been freed since Thein Sein took power two years ago and he has initiated a series of reforms following the establishment of a new Government. Over 29,000 prisoners are estimated to have been pardoned since the new civilian government took office on 30 March 2011. Last November, he announced a review of all “politically concerned” cases. “The president said in Britain that there would be no political prisoners at the end ...