Updated: May 3, 2019
Seventy students remain in detention in Myanmar for joining protests against the proposed National Education Law, which critics believe would give the central government excessive power in managing the country’s higher education institutions. Most of the detained students were arrested in a police crackdown on March 10, 2015.
There have been several street protests across the country since last year when the parliament introduced the measure. Because of the demonstrations, lawmakers called for negotiations with several student groups. When bill was approved last month, however, protesters continued to oppose the new draft.
The violent dispersal of student rallies last March generated a public outcry that forced the government to announce an investigation into the incident. Human rights groups and students from around the world have demanded the release of the detained student protesters.
San Francisco-based artist Kenneth Wong is a supporter of the campaign for the Myanmar's students immediate release. As a former student activist from Myanmar who himself joined the historic 1988 uprising, he condemns the imprisonment of the students, who were merely voicing their views on legislation that could affect their education.