AP investigation claims Myanmar's military uses ‘systematic torture’

31 October 2021
AP investigation claims Myanmar's military uses ‘systematic torture’
An aerial view of Insein prison in Yangon. Photo: Nyein Chan Naing/EPA

Myanmar's military uses systematic torture on detainees across the country since it took over the government in February, according to an investigation by the Associated Press.

Speaking with 28 people imprisoned and released in recent months, and based on photos, sketches, letters, along with testimony from three army defectors, the AP investigation provides what it says is an inclusive look into a highly secretive detention system that has held more than 9,000 people and terrorised many more.

AP notes that an estimated 1,200 people have been killed by security forces, including around 131 tortured to death. The military has also abducted thousands, including young men and boys, has used the bodies of the dead and wounded as tools of terror, and has deliberately attacked medics during the pandemic.

In their report released 29 October, the AP identified a dozen interrogation centres in use across Myanmar, in addition to prisons and police lockups. These findings are based on prisoner testimonies and satellite photo analysis.

The US State Department expressed outrage and demanded an investigation on Friday after the AP report was published.