Updated: Mar 12, 2022
According to Amnesty International, student leaders Phyoe Phyoe Aung and Lin Htet Naing (aka James and Aung Thant Zin) were released on April 8 after all charges against them were dropped by courts in Myanmar.
The releases follow the government's announcement on April 7 that it would work to free all prisoners of conscience at the first possible opportunity.
Phyoe Phyoe Aung is the secretary general of the prominent All Burma Federation Student Union. Such unions are illegal in Myanmar.
She was imprisoned on March 10, 2015 for charges relating to the student demonstrations she helped organize in February and March of that same year. The students were protesting a new education law passed by the government that the protesters claim limits free speech and democracy in the education system.
On November 3, 2015, Phyoe Phyoe Aung’s husband, Lin Htet Naing, was also arrested for organizing the protests after nearly eight months in hiding.
Reports indicate that Phyoe Phyoe Aung and Lin Htet Naing were also imprisoned following their part in organizing the student unions to demonstrate in 2007. The police violently cracked down on the protesters, and Phyoe Phyoe Aung served over three years in prison with a month in solitary confinement for her association with the demonstrations.
Endangered Scholars Worldwide is looking forward to the release of all prisoners of conscience in Myanmar.