Thursday, January 22, 2009

1,114 prisoners languish in Buthidaung jail

(Kaladan Press) -Buthidaung, Arakan State: Nearly 1,114 prisoners are languishing in Buthidaung jail for a long time. They were sentenced to prison on different allegations by the authorities, according to sources.

The prisoners were sentenced by the court on various accusations such as--- marrying without permission, drug and logs smuggling to Bangladesh from Burma--- while some are political prisoners.

At present, there are nearly 100 Rakhines and nearly 1,000 Rohingyas including 58 Rohingya women in Buthidaung jail. Most of the Rohingya women were arrested and sentenced to jail for marrying without permission.

Though the jail has a capacity of only 200, at present, 1,114 prisoners are lodged in the jail, according to a recently released prisoner from Buthidaung jail.

On November 28, Ko Htay Kyway, a student leader, three Sayadaw and one political leader were brought to Buthidaung jail from Rangoon. Ko Htay Kyway was sentenced to 65 years imprisonment.

Besides, Ashin U Ethiriya, a leader of the saffron revolution in Sittwe, Ko Than Htwee including seven youth leaders from Taunggup township who participated in the democracy movement last year were also transferred to Buthidaung's notorious jail from Sittwe jail. They are made to do hard work in jail.

Moreover, on December 30, last year 473 prisoners from Buthidaung, Sittwe (Akyab), Kyaukpru, Sandway townships were sent to hard labor camp in Youchaung under Minbya Township to work in construction of the Akyab-Rangoon high way. However, on January 10, some warm clothes and blankets have been sent to the labor camp, according to official sources.

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