U Gambira charged under Unlawful Associations Act

Jan 30, 2008 (DVB), U Gambira, the leader of the All-Burmese Monks Alliance who is currently being held in Insein prison, has been charged under the Unlawful Associations Act, according to family members.

U Gambira was arrested on 4 November in Sintgaing township, Magwe division, for his role in instigating the monk-led protests in September last year.

He has been charged with violating section 17/1 of the Unlawful Associations Act, which carries a maximum sentence of three years' imprisonment for membership of an unlawful association, attending meetings or fundraising.

A member of U Gambira's family said she had found out about the charge on 28 January when she visited him in prison.

U Gambira's younger brother Ko Aung Kyaw Kyaw, who is secretary of the National League for Democracy in Pauk township, Magwe division, was arrested on 17 October and will face the same charge.

Ko Aung Kyaw Kyaw's wife Ma Thandar said that the two brothers were being held separately.

"U Gambira is now in a special detention area of Insein prison and Ko Aung Kyaw Kyaw has been in the main ward," Ma Thandar said.

"They have both been given court appointments on 4 February, but we don't know yet whether this will be at Insein prison court or outside."

Reporting by Aye Nai

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