Burma Grants Amnesty, Frees 9,000 Prisoners
Press Release: Terry Evans
24 September 2008
Burma’s ruling junta freed 9,000 prisoners on Tuesday in an amnesty cynically timed to coincide with the start of the 63rd session of the UN General Assembly in New York .
Among those released was Burma's longest-serving political prisoner, 79-year-old journalist Win Tin, who has spent the last 19 years behind prison bars.
In addition to Win Tin, a handful of political detainees were also released, including the well-known writer Aung Soe Myint and four elderly members of the National League for Democracy (NLD) - Khin Maung Swe, May Win Myint, Win Htein and Than Nyein .
The Thailand-based Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (Burma), called for the release all political prisoners. More than 2,000 are currently incarcerated, including pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi, who has been held under house arrest for over 13 of the past 19 years.
Last month 39 pro-democracy activists were arrested, 21 of whom were sentenced to terms of imprisonment, according to the AAPP.