Annual Report 2012
The Year in Review
The year 2012 will be remember for the unprecedented number of prominent political prisoners released in Burma. The year began with a major prison release that now represents a watershed moment in the democratic aspirations of Burma. On 13 January, 302 political prisoners were released. The majority included high profile activists such as 88 Generation leaders Min Ko Naing and Ko Ko Gyi, revered ethnic leaders such as U Khun Htun Oo, Democratic Voice of Burma journalist Sithu Zeya and Hla Hla Win, dissident monk U Gambira, and many more. Since January, there have been four prisoner amnesties resulting in the release of 500 political prisoners.
Unfortunately, our key demands regarding the conditions under which a political prisoner should be released were not. This includes releasing political prisoners with official recognition of their political status and a complete wiping of their criminal record. The manner in which the releases were conducted undermines the dignity of those released and ensures that repression will follow beyond the prison walls.