Burma Partnership, Strengthening Cooperation for a Free Burma
Signup Now!
Join our mailing list for latest news and information about Burma.

Burmese Democracy Activist Sentenced to Two Years Imprisonment on Defamation Charges

By Christian Solidarity Worldwide  •  June 5, 2015

Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) is concerned at reports that Htin Lin Oo, the former information officer of the National League for Democracy (NLD), has been handed a two-year prison sentence following his conviction on charges of insulting religion.

Htin Lin Oo was charged under articles 295 (a) and 298 of Burma’s Penal Code after a speech he made on 23 October criticising Buddhist extremists for inciting hatred and violence. A Buddhist himself, he argued that the extremist Buddhist nationalists’ behaviour was contrary to the teachings of Buddhism, but was charged with insulting Buddhism as a result.

There has been a growing climate of religious intolerance in Burma in recent years, resulting in violations of freedom of religion or belief, violations of freedom of expression and violence incited against religious minorities. Htin Lin Oo’s sentence comes as Burma’s Parliament continues to consider a package of new laws known as the Protection of Race and Religion Laws, which if implemented will include legislation restricting religious conversion and inter-religious marriage.

CSW’s Chief Executive Mervyn Thomas said, “We are deeply concerned at the sentence handed down to Htin Lin Oo, who bravely and peacefully spoke up for religious tolerance and against extremism. We call for his unconditional release. We also urge the Burmese parliament to abandon the proposed new legislation and to take steps to protect and promote freedom of religion or belief and freedom of expression for all.”

 

For further information or to arrange interviews please contact  Kiri Kankhwende, Press Officer at Christian Solidarity Worldwide on +44 (0)20 8329 0045 / +44 (0) 78 2332 9663, email kiri@csw.org.uk<mailto:kiri@csw.org.uk>

Tags: , , , ,

This post is in: Press Release

Related Posts
Burma Partnership Celebrates Continuing Regional Solidarity for Burma and Embraces the Work Ahead for Progressive Voice
Myanmar’s New Dawn :Opportunities for Aung San Suu Kyi and U.S.-Myanmar Relations
Expanding People’ Solidarity for a Just and Inclusive ASEAN Community
Civil society launches #FreeThe5KH campaign in support of the imprisoned ADHOC staff and NEC official
Myanmar logging ban a major step to forest sector reform