Rights activists given life sentences

Dec 1, 2008 (DVB), Northern Rangoon Provincial court handed down life sentences to Human Rights Defendants and Protectors network member Myint Aye and two of his colleagues on Friday.

Judge Thaung Nyunt sentenced Myint Aye to life imprisonment, equivalent to 20 years, plus eight years under the Explosives Act, Immigration Act and Unlawful Association Act.

Zaw Zaw Aung, one of Myint Aye's two co-defendants, also received a life term plus eight years, while Yan Shwe was given a life term and 13 years.

Pho Phyu, the lawyer for the three men, said the decision was not fair.

Burmese authorities also extended the jail terms for several 88 generation student members and a university student activist on Friday, according to their lawyers and families.

The activists were sentenced to six more years each for three counts of inciting offences against the public tranquility.

88 generation student members Thein Than Htun, Zaw Htet Ko Ko. Chit Ko Linn, Lay Lay Mon, Noble Aye, Nwe Hnin Yee, Tharaphi Theint Theint Htun and Aye Thida, who had already been given five-year jail terms, are now to serve 11 years in total.

Thaw Zin Htun, Kyi Than, Saw Myo Min Hlaing, Aung Thike Soe and San San Tin had their terms extended from three to nine years.

De Nyein Linn, a student from western Rangoon university who had been sentenced to six and a half years in prison was given four more years by Htantabin township court.

His family said he was still awaiting sentencing on other charges.

Reporting by Nan Kham Kaew

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