Naypyitaw [Myanmar], October 23 (ANI): Myanmar authorities have rearrested around 110 political prisoners who were freed earlier this week under the general amnesty announcement by the junta, reported local media.
Family members have said that some of their loved ones were re-arrested "right at the entrance of the prison," while others were taken back within hours of returning home, reported Radio Free Asia [RFA]. Citing sources, the publication said, the detainees are now being held in police custody under Myanmar's anti-terrorism law.
"We are devastated -- our mother is 84 and her health is deteriorating," RFA quoted a family member of Lay Lay Naing as saying, on condition of anonymity. Naing was arrested on May 21 and sentenced to three years in prison for charges of spreading "false news [or] agitates directly or indirectly a criminal offense against a government employee,"
"We went to meet her at the prison, hoping that the whole family would be reunited and happy. We saw her from a distance, and she was taken away. We were not allowed to say anything," the family member added.
According to the publication, the junta on Monday had released 1,316 prisoners from various facilities throughout the country as well as 4,320 detainees who faced ongoing cases for anti-junta activities, including well-known politicians, celebrities, film actors and journalists. But the rearrest suggests that the amnesty was only a bid by the junta to appease the international community amid criticism of its rule, observers told RFA.
Earlier in June also, the junta had announced a general amnesty and freed nearly 200 detainees from detention across the country.
On February 1, the military seized power in Myanmar, imprisoning the nation's de facto ruler Aung San Suu Kyi and then President Win Myint and prompting mass protests demanding a return to civilian rule. (ANI)