Urgent Statement on the Extrajudicial Murder and Brutal Crackdown in Pathein Prison

Date; Jan 8, 2023

AAPP issues this statement to bring attention to the gross human rights violations perpetrated by the military junta. On the evening of January 5, 2023, a dispute occurred between prison authorities and political prisoners. Eight political prisoners were called out and brought from the compound. Their hands were tied behind their back, and they were savagely kicked and beaten with batons. Following brutal torture several political prisoners were severely injured some of whom are in critical condition, and at least one political prisoner was killed. AAPP strongly condemns these severe crimes of extrajudicial murder and torture in a crackdown.

In Burma since the coup, rule of law and any judicial system have collapsed. The pillars of military rule – judges, soldiers, police, and prison guards are being used by the junta to abuse and torture political prisoners. In fact, in every prison, political prisoners are intentionally tortured and violated.

On January 5, 2022, there was an altercation between political prisoners and prison guards. Prison personnel used excess force to crackdown with brutal beatings on political prisoners who were severely beaten with hands tied behind their back. One political prisoner was killed, and several critically injured. Looking at these events, the torture and extrajudicial killings in Pathein Prison are crimes under the UN Convention Against Torture (UNCAT).

Junta authorities including Pathein Prison Superintendent Nay Min Htet, Pathein City Surveillance Police Station Officer Myint Aung, and Police Station Officer Kyaw Oo, are responsible for Pathein Prison. Those who ordered crimes be perpetrated in Pathein Prison, as well as all other relevant prison officers who personally carried out the violations are responsible and must be held to account.

AAPP condemns these extrajudicial killings and brutal torture which occur daily under military rule and will strive to achieve justice for all political prisoners whose rights have been violated.

We urge the international community to provide protection from the daily perpetrated human rights violations, extrajudicial killings and brutal torture. The junta is committing international crimes, but such cases cannot be handled within the domestic judiciary system – international judiciary mechanisms must hence take action for accountability.

Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhumane or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (1984)

Article 2

2.2 No exceptional circumstances whatsoever, whether a state of war or a threat of war, internal political instability or any other public emergency, may be invoked as justification of torture.

2.3.An order from a superior officer or a public authority may not be invoked as a justification of torture.

For More Information

Assistance Association for Political Prisoners

Email, info@aappb.org

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