Myanmar: Former journalist and political leader released

English PEN welcomes the release of former journalist and member of the National League for Democracy (NLD), Ohn Kyaing, on 11 December 2008.

According to our, Ohn Kyaing, a member of the Cyclone Nargis Emergency Relief Committee formed by the NLD, was arrested by the Special Intelligence Police Unit at his home in Rangoon on 1 October 2008. 72 days later he was released from Insein Prison, without being charged.  No official reason for his arrest has been made public, although it is believed that his arrest was linked to his involvement in the relief effort.

Two other leading activists were also detained for their relief efforts following Cyclone Nargis, comedian Zargana and journalist Zaw Thet Htwe. They have since been sentenced to staggeringly harsh sentences of 59 years and 15 years respectively.

For the previous WiPC alert on Ohn Kyaing’s case, see:

For the latest alert on comedian Zargana, see:


For the latest alert on journalist Zaw Thet Htwe, see:


Thank you to all who sent appeals on behalf of Ohn Kyaing.

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