Myanmar’s Military Junta granted amnesty to 3,015 prisoners in an order, and 98 foreign prisoners and five Sri Lankans in separate orders on Monday, the first day of the local calendar New Year.
It is to mark the Southeast Asian country’s traditional New Year with peace in mind and on humanitarian grounds, as well as in view of relations between the respective countries and Myanmar, the Military Junta said.
Myanmar typically pardons thousands of prisoners in an annual amnesty to mark its traditional New Year, and it released 1,619 prisoners on New Year’s Day last year. On Jan. 4 this year, Myanmar also pardoned more than 7,000 prisoners on its 75th Independence Day.
On February 1, 2021, the military carried out a coup in Myanmar, a country whose endless political and economic crisis has opened a spiral of violence with new civilian militias, which have joined the guerrilla war that this Asian country has been experiencing for decades.
A father who lost his daughter younger than 8 yrs and a mother who lost her son to Myanmar military’s recent targeted aerial bombing in Pazigyi Village in Kant Balu township in Sagaing Region. Sobbing mother bewailed “nothing can console” her grief. #WhatsHappeningInMyanmar pic.twitter.com/rR1kJzsz6l
— Ni Lay (@NiLay0515)
April 17, 2023
The Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP), a human rights organization, denounced that at least 17,460 citizens who protested against the coup are still detained.
One of the political prisoners is “Aung San Suu Kyi, a Nobel laureate and figurehead of opposition to military rule, who is serving 33 years in prison after a marathon of trials condemned internationally as a sham,” as recalled by the Asian Peace Research Organization.
In March, the United Nations acknowledged that the Military Junta has murdered over 3,000 civilians, caused the forced displacement of some 1.3 million people, and imprisoned over 16,000 citizens for political reasons.