02/15/2010, 00.00
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United Nations Human Rights representative in official visit to Myanmar

Tomas Ojea Quintana is set to meet government officials and visit Insein prison, which holds many of the country’s 2,100 political prisoners. No confirmation has been made about a possible meeting with strongman Than Shwe or opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi. Tin Oo is still unhappy that his fellow political prisoners are still behind bars.
Yangon (AsiaNews/Agencies) – A special United Nations Human Rights representative has arrived today in Yangon on a five-day official visit. Mr Tomas Ojea Quintana is scheduled to meet government leaders in Naypyidaw and visit Insein Prison, which holds many of the country’s 2,100 political prisoners.

The UN envoy will also visit a region that borders with Bangladesh, scene of a separatist insurgency by a local minority, but is not expected to meet either General Than Shwe, head of the military junta, or opposition leader Ms Aung San Suu Kyi, who is under house arrest.

Before arriving, the Argentinean diplomat said that 2010 was a “critical time” for the people of Burma. For the first time in two decades, elections will be.

Quintana’s visit comes two days after the release of Tin Oo (pictured), the second in command of the National League for Democracy (NLD), who spent the past seven years in prison and under house arrest.

Tin, 82, did not benefit from any amnesty or sentence reduction, but was released after completing his entire sentence.

After he was set free, he said, "I am not happy with my freedom. I am very sorry about my colleagues who are still serving time in prisons”.

According to human rights activists, 2,100 political prisoners are held in the regime’s prisons, including Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi.

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See also
Ban Ki-moon in Myanmar to seek Aung San Suu Kyi’s release
Aung San Suu Kyi “not opposed” to lifting some sanctions
Doctors visit a sick Aung San Suu Kyi
Aung San Suu Kyi meets junta official
Myanmar: has Than Shwe been ousted from power?


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