Detained NLD member denied family visits

Jan 8, 2009 (DVB), Insein township National League for Democracy member Tun Tun Naing has been banned from receiving family visits in Meikhtila prison, where he has been detained since 24 November last year.

Tun Tun Naing was sentenced to 19 years' imprisonment in connection with the September 2007 protests.

Aye Aye Thet, Tun Tun Naing's wife, said he had been banned from receiving visitors for one month.

"Apparently some senior officials came to the prison on Monday to check on sanitation systems and the personal hygiene of the inmates there," Aye Aye Thet said.

"Most of the inmates did not talk directly to the senior officials but just communicated via the prison officials," she said.

"But he talked to them directly and the prison officials were disappointed in him for doing that, so later in the day, they banned him from receiving prison visits for one month as a punishment for violating prison regulations."

Aye Aye Thet was told she should come back on 5 February.

Tun Tun Naing had previously told his wife he was having trouble maintaining his healthy lifestyle as he was only allowed a short time for walking, and was not given any blankets on cold nights or any kind of container to use for a toilet.

When Aye Aye Thet tried to bring him food, prison officials told her the items she had brought were not allowed.

"I brought some fish sauce and vegetables like cabbage to him as he had asked for them before in a letter he sent me," Aye Aye Thet explained.

"But the prison officials refused to accept those items for him; they said cabbage was prohibited as it might damage the inmates’ health because a lot of insecticides were used in growing them," she said.

"They said instant noodles were also prohibited as the prison had no hot water to give the inmates to prepare them," she continued.

"Instant coffee mix packs bought from outside were not allowed either , only those sold by prison officials were allowed."

Reporting by Nan Kham Kaew

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