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Khaing Kaung San, who was chairman of the Arakanese Patriotic Literature Club based in Bangkok, was released from Thayet prison on Friday

September 21, 2009

Arakanese Activist Released After 9 Years in Prison

9/21/2009
Dhaka: Khaing Kaung San, who was chairman of the Arakanese Patriotic Literature Club based in Bangkok, was released from Thayet prison on Friday in a government amnesty after serving 9 years in prison, said his fried.

Khaing Kaung San was arrested in Bangkok by Thai police on 4 December, 2000, while he was praying for the Thai King on his birthday along with nearly 100 other Burmese political activists and migrants.

Thai police handed him over to Burmese authorities from Myawaddy through the Mae Sot border point along with five other Arakanese activists, seven days after his arrest.

Burmese military authorities sentenced him to ten years in prison for his activities in Thailand against the Burmese military junta. His two colleagues – Hla Thein Tun and That Naing – were sentenced by the military government to three years in prison.

After being sentenced, the three were moved to Rangoon from Myawaddy and Khaing Kaung San was shifted to Thayet prison to serve his prison term.

According to his friend, Khaing Kaung San and his colleagues were tortured severely by Burmese intelligence agents during their interrogations in Myawaddy. Because of that, his health is poor and he suffered from internal injuries throughout his jaim term.

Khaing Kaung San is now about 40 years old and his native town is Ponna Kyunt, 20 miles north of Sittwe, the capital of Arakan State.

He was also a member of the Arakan League for Democracy (in exile), which won 11 parliamentary seats from Arakan State in the 1990 elections in Burma. The military government that sponsored the elections refused to recognize the results.

The source said that Khaing Kaung San was already about to be released this year because his prison term was nearly complete. The government amnesty for him was not necessary because he had nearly finished his sentence.

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