Sunday, December 02, 2007

Maggin Monastery Locked Down!

Dear Friends,

Here is an update on the situation of Maggin Monastery and detained activists.

Maggin Monastery (Nov 29): Yesterday about 4:30 pm, three army trucks and armed soldiers and security people with motorbikes surrounded the monastery and the authorities entered the monastery and read out a directive for everyone to leave. Some laypeople were there to help out. Now the monastery has been locked down. Update on the situation of the monks and novices after leaving the place is yet to be known.

Mother of ’88 Student Leader Died (Nov 30): Daw Mi Mi Lay (68 years old), who is the mother of ’88 Generation Student leader Htay Kywe, died from cancer at home in Rangoon last night. Htay Kywe received a family visit at Insein Prison on Monday (Nov 26) and the family has made requests for him to see his dying mothers a few days ago and now to be able to come to the funeral on Monday (Dec 3).

In late 2006, Daw Mi Mi Lay was also admitted to the hospital for her worsening cancer. Still receiving treatment she had to leave the hospital immediately in the middle of a night when the doctor in-charge received a phone call from the authorities in the Capital asking whether Htay Kywe’s mother was staying at the hospital and he got panic and asked her to leave. At that time Htay Kywe was in detention along with four other leaders of the ’88 Generation Students group including Min Ko Naing.

Htay Kywe was in prison both times when his father and his brother Win Kywe, also a leader of 1988 democracy uprising, died a few years ago, and his family appealed for him to attend the funerals, but those appeals were all rejected.

Ethnic Leaders Released (Nov 26): A prominent Zomi ethnic leader, Cin Sian Thang was released on Monday morning after nearly one week in custody. He is a chairman of Zomi National Congress and a member of the Committee Representing the People's Parliament (CRPP), arrested on November 20 along with other CRPP members and ethnic leaders Naing Ngwe Thein, U Aye Tha Aung, U Ohn Tin, Khun Htoo and U Soe Win.

Prominent Chin ethnic leader U Pu Chin Sian Thang also has been freed after his arrest last week for supporting detained opposition leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi's call for dialogue and national reconciliation, released by the UN Special Envoy Mr. Gambari on Nov 8, after his return from Burma.

They were questioned about their views on the statement issued by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. All of them with the exception of U Pu Cin Sian Thang were released the same day.

Three Activists Released (Nov 25): Aye Myint Myat, Ye Dagun and Wai Linn Htun were released from detention on Sunday, Nov 26.

But More Arrested (Nov 26 & 27): Aung Zaw Oo, a member of the Human Rights Defenders and Promoters (HRDP) was arrested on Monday at about 1 pm from a teashop in downtown Rangoon. Aung Zaw Oo, a native of Bokalay town, is currently residing in Rangoon and was taking an active role in planning for the December 10th International Human Rights Day, which the HRDP is planning to organize in Rangoon. Another three activists – Myat San (Tri Color Students), Win Maw (Shwe Thanzin Music Band) and Aung Aung (’88 Generation Student) were arrested on Nov 27.

Students Names Collected (Nov 26): In a bid to put a leash on any kind of students' movement in universities, invigilators in Rangoon University east campus are collecting the names and roll numbers of students who are coming for their examination in black dresses as a mark of mourning for those killed during the protests because of a rumor that students in condemnation of the ruling junta's brutal crackdown on protesters in September would wear black as a sign of mourning. a student source said

Women Activists Took to the Street (Nov 25): About twenty seven young women activists staged a small anti-government protest in the main city Rangoon - the first to take place there since the authorities crushed demonstrations in September. The women walked in a column lining 3 in a roll and gathered quietly at the Sule pagoda in central Rangoon, trying to avoid alerting the security forces.

In Solidarity,

Khin Ohmar
Coordinator, APPPB

Notes: Special thanks go to N.S.N for this message.

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