Oct 30, 2007 (DVB), A schoolteacher in Tenasserim division has been sentenced to one year in prison for wearing his work uniform to a pro-government mass rally, according to local residents.
Win Aung, a 48-year-old school teacher who lives and works in Kawthaung township, attended a pro-government rally organised by the local Union Solidarity and Development Association last Wednesday in his teaching uniform.
Township residents said he was arrested by authorities after the rally and shortly afterwards given a one-year prison sentence.
A Kawthaung USDA member told DVB on condition of anonymity that a secret order had been issued from the capital Naypyidaw to local authorities to make sure school teachers and students do not wear their uniforms to the rallies.
The USDA member claimed this was because the regime wanted to hide the fact that many of those at the rallies were government employees and schoolchildren who had been forced to attend.
He said that the junta has also directed the local authorities to punish those who do not obey the order.
Mass rallies have been held across Burma to show support for the National Convention and to condemn the recent anti-government protests led by monks and civilians.
The Burmese regime has pointed to the rallies as evidence that the majority of Burmese people do not support the protestors, but attendees have reported being forced to join or offered incentives to do so.
Reporting by DVB