New Myanmar government frees scores of jailed activists

April 8, 2016 15:41

The new government of Myanmar democracy champion Aung San Suu Kyi released scores of jailed activists on Friday, just over a week after assuming power, and the new president is preparing to pardon 100 more people serving sentences for political offenses.

Many of Suu Kyi's supporters and members of her National League for Democracy (NLD) party were political prisoners under the junta that ceded power in 2011 after nearly 50 years of military rule. Suu Kyi herself spent years under house arrest and said on Thursday releasing remaining political prisoners was a top priority.

A total of 69 student activists and supporters had charges against them dismissed and were released from jail in the town of Tharrawaddy, north of Yangon, said Zaw Htay, a spokesman for Suu Kyi's office. Students and relatives hugged and some waved NLD flags after their release.

Many of them were detained during a violent police dispersal of student protests in March 2015.

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