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President U Win Myint
Office No. 18 Nay Pyi Taw
Republic of the Union of Myanmar
Fax: +95 1 652 624
Dear President U Win Myint
I am writing to express my ongoing concern about the prosecution and imprisonment of members of the Peacock Generation, who are being targeted solely for their peaceful, satirical performances criticizing the Myanmar military. Amnesty International considers this case to be politically motivated and considers all those detained to be prisoners of conscience, jailed for solely exercising their human right to freedom of expression.
I am dismayed the learn that, on 11 December, four members of the group were each sentenced to six months in prison after being found guilty of “online defamation” under Section 66(d) of the 2013 Telecommunications Act. These convictions come just weeks after they – along with two other group members – were sentenced to one year in prison under Section 505(a) of Myanmar’s Penal Code. Today, six members of the Peacock Generation are serving prison sentences of between one and a half and two and a half years in connection with their peaceful satirical performances. They – along with a seventh group member – are also facing a further charge of “online defamation” in a different court.
I am also deeply concerned by the ongoing use of repressive laws, including Section 505(a) of the Penal Code and Section 66(d) of the Telecommunications Act, to arrest, prosecute, and imprison peaceful activists and human rights defenders in Myanmar. These laws arbitrarily and unlawfully restrict the right to freedom of expression and have no place in a country which claims to respect and protect human rights.
I urge you to ensure their immediate and unconditional release.