Burma Campaign UK (BCUK) has asked the British Foreign Office to pressure the Burmese government to agree to investigate how many political prisoners remain in Burma’s jails.
It said the investigative body should be comprised of government officials and international and United Nations representatives, in a statement released on Wednesday.
Despite positive democratic changes in Burma, political prisoners have been left behind in jail, BCUK said in a statement. Last week, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also made a plea for Burma to release all remaining political prisoners and prisoners of conscience.
“To achieve peace and national reconciliation in Burma, the unconditional release of all the remaining political prisoners must take place,” the BCUK said.
To draw attention to the remaining political prisoners, BCUK highlights the case of a different political prisoner every month.
The political prisoner for this month is Shwe Htoo (aka) Aung Zeya, who was sent to prison for 42 years in 1998, said the BCUK.
Shwe Htoo is a retired teacher. When he was arrested in 1998, he was charged with three different counts, including under the High Treason Act 124 (A), for his role in mobilizing people to speak out for better system in the country. He had previously served three years in jail for his involvement in the 1988 uprising. He is currently held in Taung Lay Lone Prison in Shan State.
The latest news from his family said he is unwell and suffering from high blood pressure and gastric problems, according to the BCUK.
“Despite the talk of reform from President Thein Sein, he still keeps hundreds of political prisoners in jail,” said Anna Roberts, executive director at Burma Campaign UK. “We need a joint domestic and international board to be formed with the help of the UN to investigate how many activists in Burma remain in jail and secure their release.”
For more information, go to