Rohingya Vision

Burma Holding Rohingya Activist, Says Rights Group

Burma Holding Rohingya Activist, Says Rights Group
July 05
22:17 2014

By International Federation for Human Rights Media Release

Sunday, July 6, 2014

BANGKOK: The Burmese Government must end the prosecution of Rohingya human rights defender Kyaw Hla Aung and immediately release him, the Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, an FIDH-OMCT joint program, and the Alternative ASEAN Network on Burma (ALTSEAN-Burma) said yesterday.

Lawyer U Kyaw Hla Aung

Lawyer U Kyaw Hla Aung, an Activist for Peaceful Co-existence

On July 7, 2014, Kyaw Hla Aung, a prominent human rights lawyer, will appear before the Sittwe District Court to face various charges, including ”rioting and being armed with deadly weapons” (Article 148 of the Criminal Code) and ”injuring a civil servant, interfering with his official duties” (Article 333 of the Criminal Code).

”The ongoing detention of Kyaw Hla Aung is symptomatic of the Burmese Government’s relentless persecution of Rohingya and its misguided policies in Arakan State,” said FIDH President Karim Lahidji.

”Kyaw Hla Aung is a moderate and well-respected member of the Rohingya community. Instead of keeping him behind bars, the Burmese Government should release him and work with him to promote dialogue between Buddhist and Muslim communities, including Rohingya, in Arakan State,” he added.

On July 15, 2013, authorities in Sittwe Township, Arakan State, arrested Kyaw Hla Aung in connection with Rohingya internally displaced person protests against attempts by the Government to register them as ‘Bengali’ in April 2013.

Clashes between Rohingya IDPs and immigration officials during the protests at Thetkalpyin IDP camp in Sittwe Township forced the authorities to suspend the registration process.

However, Kyaw Hla Aung was not present during the protests and, in fact, had tried to contact camp leaders in order to advise them to keep the protests peaceful.

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