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Activists protesting Land Nationalization Act released on bail


Chiang Mai (Mizzima) - Seven people arrested last week during a demonstration in front of the Department of Human Settlement and Housing Development in Rangoon were released on bail on Friday after being interrogated.

Protestors who were arrested in this land-ownership demonstration on Thursday were released on bail on Friday. Onlookers watch farmers’ demonstrate against confiscation of land and for the right of  ownership in front of the Department of Human Settlement and Housing Development in Rangoon on Thursday, October 27, 2011. Photo: MizzimaThe group, including lawyer Pho Phyu, staged a short protest on Thursday urging the authorities to revoke the Land Nationalization Act.
 
Twelve farmers underwent interrogation and were detained in Botahtaung Township Police station for one night. They posted bail totaling five million kyat (about US$ 800).
 
Lawyer Pho Pyu; farmers Soe Naing, Khin Htwe, Aung Myit and Thein Tun of Kyizu village; farmer Nyo of Thayatpinchaung village in Dagon Seikkan Township; and Thi Aung were charged with unlawful assembly and civil disobedience. The Botahtaung Township Court scheduled a hearing for November 11.
 
“Although a bill for farmers was introduced in Parliament, it’s just a lie. The land [ownership] bill was approved. But there is no solution for illegally confiscated land so farmers have been caught in a severe poverty trap,” said attorney Pho Phyu.
 
Holding placards, the farmers staged the protest at the settlement and housing building on Bogyoke Road, calling for the revocation of the 1953 Land Nationalization Act and the return of confiscated land to the original owners.
 
A few minutes after the protest started, about 100 policemen arrived at the scene and the crowd dispersed. Information police took the organizers to the Rangoon Region government office and interrogated them for two hours.

Describing the interrogation, lawyer Pho Phyu said: “In their interrogation technique, we had to wear hoods, black bags. Then they asked questions. I felt suffocated. I think the water we had to drink during the interrogation contained drugs. I felt dizzy.”
Last Updated ( Monday, 31 October 2011 13:29 )  

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