Detained Prome youths tortured

Two youths in central Burma’s Pegu Division who were arrested by authorities last month were said to be being tortured in an interrogation whilst also being denied food, water and sleep for two days, according to a source close to one of their families.

Zarni Htun, a resident of the town of Prome, and Wei Phyo of Okpho, were arrested on August 12 in Innma township and interrogated in police stations in Innma and Prome. They were also being denied visits by their families.

The source under condition of anonymity said police found three posters, dedicated to a campaign for the release of political prisoners’, underneath the seat of the motorbike the two were driving when they were arrested but it was not clear whether the posters actually belonged to them or not.

A family member of one of the youths said they were currently being detained in Prome prison and are to appear in a court hearing on September 14. They will likely face charges under Unlawful Associations Act for allegedly making contact with an unlawful association.

Min Lwin, a lawyer for the Asian Human Rights Commission said that torture in Burma is know to induce people death or being mentally damaged.

“We see that government authorities, under the pretext of the law are not only neglecting the law but also violating it themselves. These violations, when reported, are ignored.”

United Nations’ Special Human Rights Rapporteur Thomas Ojea Quintana in the end of his recent visit to Burma expressed a concern over torture of political prisoners in prisons and interrogation centres through the country.

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