Saturday, May 2, 2009

21 Nargis volunteers still detain in Burma

Dhaka (Narinjara): Twenty one Nargis volunteer have been serving their jail term from 2 to 35 years several prison in Burma as they were working for Nargis victim and its rehabilitation after of the Nargis cyclone in Burma, said a press release of AAPP.

The Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (Burma), AAPP, released a report one day before annual Nargis tragedy day and said in the report that 21 volunteers who are currently facing between 2 and 35 years in prison for their efforts to assist in the aftermath of the cyclone, including gathering dead bodies and burying them.

"The report released today to mark the anniversary of Cyclone Nargis, which struck Burma a year ago," said AAPP.

In the report, five of the volunteers are former political prisoners, who have already spent many years in jail, are also facing the punishment of authority for the involving in the volunteer.

AAPP Secretary Tate Naing said, “Their punishment is completely unacceptable. Their ‘crimes’ were to help people and tell the truth about the situation. We call on ASEAN and UN to press the military regime to release the Cyclone Nargis volunteers – and all political prisoners – immediately.”

The organization renewed its calls for support for its campaign petition Free Burma’s Political Prisoners Now! The campaign is conducted by the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (Burma) and Forum for Democracy in Burma.

199 organizations worldwide have endorsed the campaign.

“Political prisoners – including Cyclone Nargis volunteers - must not be forgotten. Ordinary people everywhere can sign the petition,” added Tate Naing. (Click to Sign Petition here ...)

The campaign aims to collect 888,888 petition signatures before 24 May. This is the date that the military junta claims that Nobel Peace Prize winner Daw Aung San Suu Kyi should be released from house arrest, despite the fact that the United Nations has recently declared that this consecutive sixth year of house arrest contravenes the regime’s own laws.


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