AAPP’s Monthly Chronology February 2020 and Current PP list
Month in Review
Freedom of Speech and Expression
The condition of freedom of speech and expression in Burma has continued to regress.In February, (12) students were sued under Section 19 and 20 of Peaceful Assembly and Peaceful Procession Law for exercising their freedom of speech and expression. Including activist Naw Ohn Hla, a total of (19) people were sentenced to imprisonment or to pay fine under Peaceful Assembly and Peaceful Procession Law or Section 66 (d) of the Telecommunications Law. Under current government citizens continue to be restrained with a variety of repressive laws, such as Peaceful Assembly and Peaceful Procession Law, and this has greatly impeded Burma’s transition process. Therefore, AAPP urges the government to respect the rights of all civilians to freedom of expression.
Consequences of Conflict in Ethnic Regions
Despite the signature of the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA) in 2015, ethnic conflicts have continued with EAGs who have not signed the NCA, but also skirmishes have continued with those that have signed the NCA. Over the last year fighting between the army and Arakan Army (AA) has intensified. Indigenous people continue to suffer a disproportionate amount from the effects of these armed conflicts. The incidents of February are shown below;
Human Rights Abuses Committed by Authorities
- Arnolds, who lives in Myothit Ward in Kyauktaw Town, Arakan State, was arrested and interrogated by the military while he was going to refuel his motorcycle. He was beaten while his hands were tied on his back, and thus he had to receive emergency treatment at the hospital of Kyauktaw Township.
- Htay Hlaing, who lives in Phar Pyaw Village, Minbya Township, Arakan State, was seriously injured when he was arrested and beaten by the army. He was admitted to Sittwe Hospital through Minbya Hospital and received treatment.
- Long Jingda who lives in Phat Pheik Village, Naung Hlaing Village Tract, Panglong Town, Loilem Township, southern Shan State, was arrested for two days by the army, accusing him of working for an Ethnic Armed Group Army.
- Arakan Youth Conference representative, Kyaw Hla and a 10th grade student from Buthidaung Township, who were on the passenger boat travelling to Kyauktaw from Paletwa in Chin State, are being arrested by the army. Similarly, six civilians on a passenger boat travelling to Paletwa Township from Kyauktaw Township are being arrested by the army.
Human Rights Abuses Committed by Ethnic Armed Groups
- Zeya Min, executive committee member and treasurer for the Ramree Township National League for Democracy (NLD) in Arakan State, was arrested by Arakan Army (AA) on February 6, according to NLD spokesman Dr. Myo Nyunt. AA news and information officer, Khine Thuka denied that they did not arrest.
- In Nankam Township, northern Shan State, Five Kholon Lishaw Ethnic civilians including two 70 year old men are being arrested by Ta’ang National Liberation Army (PSLF/TNLA).
- In Kyauktaw, Rethadaung, Buthidaung, Mrauk-U and Minbya Township, Arakan State, and Pletwa Township, Chin State, four civilians were killed by gunfire and 30 civilians were injured, including two children. In addition, a civilian was killed by gunfire in Kyaukme Township, Shan State. Moreover, because of artillery and bomb blast in Rathedaung, Kyauktaw, Buthidaung, Minbya and Mrauk-U Township, eight people were killed, including four children, and 43 were injured, including 28 children (Most of the 28 children were students). Besides, four civilians were killed and two were injured by landmines in Rathedaung and Buthidaung Townships, Arakan State, Mingngot Township, Shan State, Waingmaw Township, Kachin State.
The incidents above are human rights violations in armed conflicts committed by state and non state forces. In both cases the perpetrators enjoy impunity. February 20 is the day of The World Day of Social Justice which states that “Social justice is an underlying principle for peaceful and prosperous coexistence within and among nations. We uphold the principles of social justice when we promote gender equality, or the rights of indigenous peoples and migrants. We advance social justice when we remove barriers that people face because of gender, age, race, ethnicity, religion, culture or disability.” Therefore, we urge the government to protect indigenous people who suffer the consequences of fighting that haven’t ended yet and to enact the reparation law for those who have suffered from human rights violations.
The positive step in February is that the AAPP, Equality Myanmar, Human Rights Defenders and Promoters(HRDP) and The Seagull and International Relations Committee of Pyithu Hluttaw, the Public Management Committee of Pyithu Hluttaw, the Committee for Citizens’ Fundamental Rights of Pyithu Hluttaw, the Committee for Citizens’ Fundamental Rights, the Democracy and Human Rights of Amyotha Hluttaw discussed the need to sign and ratify the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (UNCAT) and International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) in order to prevent human rights abuses and torture.
Land confiscation and disputes are still unsolved in Burma. In February, 133.12 acres of land, which were confiscated by the Ministry of Industry in Ywar Thit Gyi Sanpya Village in Sagaing Division, were returned to the original farmers. Despite this, many more land seizues remain contested.
- Approximately 25 farmers staged a protest in Pyu Town in Bago Division to return their confiscated lands.
- The Mangpan People’s Militia Force (PMF), which is an armed group aligned with the Burma Army, has seized 370 acres of lands from farmers in Nam Pao village-tract, located in Lashio township, to plant rubber and mango trees for its own profit.
Therefore, we urge the government to promote the Land Sector and to promote and protect the benefictory of farmers who are facing the consequences of land loss and are vulnerable to the various land issues. Moreover, we urge the government to enhance the farmers rights by following and respect the Law of Protection of the Farmer Rights and Enhancement of Their Benefits International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) that was ratified by Burma.
Download link for Chronology Feb Chronology
Current PP list Download link 74 Remaining PP final list (Updated On 27 February 2020)
Facing Trial list Download link 568 Facing Trial final List (Updated On 29 February 2020)
66(D) list 66 (D) total list(new) Updated
For more information:
Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP)
Tate Naing (Secretary) +95(0) 9428 023 828
U Bo Kyi (Joint-Secrtary) +95(0) 942 5308840
Aung Myo Kyaw (Office In-Charge) +95(0) 942811 7348