Political Prisoner Profile

AAPP CASE NO.:
NAME OF POLITICAL PRISONER: 0151

U Kyaw Min (a.k.a. Mohammad Shamsul Anwarul Hoque a.k.a. Marmaud Shaoshu Arnolgula Haud)
(Note: “U” is a Burmese honorific title used for a mature man in a senior position to convey respect) ETHNICITY: Rohingya Male AGE: 1953 56 in 2009 Muslim

GENDER: DATE OF BIRTH: RELIGION: PARENTS NAME: EDUCATION: OCCUPATION: ORGANIZATION(S): LAST ADDRESS: ARREST DATE: SECTION OF L AW: SENTENCING HISTORY: COURT HEARING: NAME OF PRISON: RELEASE DATE:

U Phaw Zaw Raw Man and Daw Lay Men Khartu
PHOTO DATE: ±2005 Bachelor of Economics and Diploma in Education Teacher and Middle School Principal/Headmaster Member of Parliament (MP) for Buthidaung Township (1), Arakan State; Committee Representing the People's Parliament (CCRP) Member; and National Democratic Party for Human Rights (NDPHR) Central Executive Committee Member Buthidaung Township, Arakan State and Tamwe Township, Rangoon Division 17 March 2005 1982 Citizenship Law, Section 18; and 1950 Emergency Provisions Act, Section 5(J) 47 years in prison and a 50,000-kyat fine on 29 July 2005 Rangoon Western District Court Myingyan Prison, Mandalay Division

IMMEDIATE HEALTH CONCERNS: Below is a list of U Kyaw Min’s health concerns that have been reported; however, since his wife and three of his children are also in prison, it is likely that his health conditions are under-reported as information is often provided by family members following prison visits: • High Blood Pressure (DVB 12Apr2005) • Rheumatic arthritis (AAPP Source) On 18 October 2005 DVB reported, “Due to poor prison diets and stress, Kyaw Min is very weak and his wife is suffering from serious pains, a friend of his told DVB. Kyaw Min is said to be very worried about the appeal lodged on his behalf and he is unable to eat properly because of the poor prison diet and the religious rules he has been observing during the Islamic lent. His wife [Tiza] is very weak and she harbours anxieties for her daughters who are also being imprisoned.” CURRENT STATUS SUMMARY: U Kyaw Min is a 56-year-old man and former political prisoner who is now serving a 47-year prison sentence at Myingyan Prison in Mandalay Division for his political involvement as a Member of Parliament and member of the Committee Representing the People's Parliament (CRPP). However U Kyaw Min, his wife, and three of his children were imprisoned under the pretext of giving false information about their Rohingya ethnicity in order to maintain Burmese citizenship. (See details below.) It is widely believed that U Kyaw Min and his family were being targeted and punished as a result of him being a high-profile political figure and Rohingya ethnic minority. U Kyaw Min’s arrest in March 2005 followed shortly after his participation in two political activities that February: 1) he helped prepare a statement for CRPP that was released on Union Day, and 2) he met with a delegation from the United Nations’ International Labour Organisation (ILO) that was visiting Burma from 21-23 February 2005. (Irrawaddy Burmese 11Sep2006; and News from Bangladesh 31Jan2008) It has also been noted that the question of U Kyaw Min’s nationality/ethnicity is surprising, given that the Page 1 of 5

authenticity of his documents would have required careful scrutiny on at least three significant occasions prior to his arrest (see “Career Background” below for more details): 1. Education – U Kyaw Min studied Economics at the Rangoon Institute of Economics, a subject which Burmese law prohibits foreigners from studying. (News from Bangladesh 31Jan2008) 2. Government Jobs – For nearly 20 years U Kyaw Min held various government jobs in the field of education, which is not allowed for someone who is not a citizen of Burma. (News from Bangladesh 31Jan2008) 3. 1990 Election – Prior to the 1990 Multi-party Democratic General Election, the Election Commission reviewed the national status for all candidates, and foreigners could not participate. U Kyaw Min was registered with the National Democratic Party for Human Rights (NDPHR), which was known as the main political party of the Rohingya ethnic minority. (Arakan Rohingya Organization – Japan 17Mar2007; and Asian Human Rights Commission 23Feb2009) As of 6 September 2005, DVB reported, “Kyaw Min is still not allowed to see his family members and the permission has to be applied at the Interior Affairs Ministry. His family friends insisted that the authorities are abusing the rights the prisoner is entitled to.” On 15 October 2005 DVB reported that the authorities issued an order banning the sale of his apartment in Tamwe Township, Rangoon Division. They also issued an arrest warrant against his oldest son who was still on the run. The authorities also raided U Kyaw Min’s family home in Buthidaung Township, Arakan State to interrogate all of his close relatives, causing them to go into hiding for fear of arrest. On 18 October 2005 DVB reported that the authorities were also trying to seize U Kyaw Min’s properties in Rangoon and Buthidaung. In July 2007 U Kyaw Min was transferred from Insein Prison in Rangoon Division, where he was detained since his arrest in 2005, to Myingyan Prison in Mandalay Division. (DVB 27Jul2007) Myingyan Prison is approximately 643 kilometers (400 miles) away from Rangoon where U Kyaw Min’s wife, one son, and two daughters are believed to still be detained at Insein Prison. CAREER BACKGROUND: In 1953 U Kyaw Min (a.k.a. Mohammad Shamsul Anwarul Hoque) was born in Mikyanzay Village, Buthidaung Township, Arakan State to his parents, U Phaw Zaw Raw Man and Daw Lay Men Khartu. In 1968 U Kyaw Min earned a Bachelor of Economics degree from the Rangoon Institute of Economics, and he began working as a teacher in Sittwe Township in 1969. In 1983, he received a Diploma in Education and served as the Deputy Head of Buthidaung Township Educational Department. In 1985 he became a middle school principal/headmaster but was dismissed from the position in 1989 because of his political involvement in the 1988 Uprising* when he led the Teachers Union in Buthidaung Township. (National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma: Burma's May 27, 1990 Democratic Election Records by Khin Kyaw Han on 27 May 2006, translated from Burmese to English by AAPP)
* The 1988 Uprising was a series of pro-democracy marches and demonstrations initiated by students in Rangoon on 8 August 1988. The protests spread throughout the country. Hundreds of thousands of people including monks, young children, university students, housewives, and doctors demonstrated against the regime. The uprising ended on 18 September 1988, when the State Law and Order Restoration Council (SLORC) ordered a stop; the military opened fire on protestors and thousands were killed while many others were arrested and sentenced to long imprisonments.

U Kyaw Min and his wife, Daw Tiza (a.k.a. Daw Kyaw Tiza), are from the Rohingya ethnic minority group – a predominantly Muslim group which has been the victim of violent and humiliating discrimination in Burma for many decades, despite having lived in Arakan State for centuries. Below are just some of the ways the Rohingya people have suffered under Burma’s military junta: • Rohingyas are used as human minesweepers and bullet shields, and children are abducted and sent to the frontline.(Islamic Human Rights Commission 06Jun2005) • Villagers are shot on sight, villages are burnt down, paddy fields and livestock are destroyed. (Islamic Page 2 of 5

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Human Rights Commission 06Jun2005) Women are regularly raped, sometimes in their homes with children and relatives left to watch. (Islamic Human Rights Commission 06Jun2005; and Council for Restoration of Democracy in Burma 19Oct2007) Religious sites and places of worship are destroyed. (Islamic Human Rights Commission 06Jun2005; and Council for Restoration of Democracy in Burma 19Oct2007) Land is confiscated without compensation. (News from Bangladesh 31Jan2008) Forced labor and forced relocation are regular occurences. (Islamic Human Rights Commission 06Jun2005; and News from Bangladesh 31Jan2008) Rohingyas are not allowed to move from one township to another or spend the night in another village without official written permission from the local military authorities in advance. (Council for Restoration of Democracy in Burma 19Oct2007; and News from Bangladesh 31Jan2008) If married without official permission, Rohingyas will be heavily fined or sent to prison. (News from Bangladesh 31Jan2008) Rohingya students are prohibitted from receiving higher education outside of Arakan State and are also prohibited from attending Sittwe University within Arakan State. (News from Bangladesh 31Jan2008; and Islamic Human Rights Commission 06Jun2005) In 1978, when Burma’s junta intiated systematic genocide through “Operation Dragon King,” 300,000 Rohingyas fled to neighboring Bangladesh. When the Burmese military government was forced by the international community to take back its citizens, only 180,000 dared return home to Burma’s Arakan State, and of those, one-third died of starvation and malnutrition. (Council for Restoration of Democracy in Burma 19Oct2007) The junta’s discriminatory 1982 Citizenship Law essentially denies Rohingyas of their Burmese citizenship, suddenly making them illegal immigrants in their ancestral motherland. (Council for Restoration of Democracy in Burma 19Oct2007; and News from Bangladesh 31Jan2008)

U Kyaw Min became a Central Executive Committee Member of the National Democratic Party for Human Rights (NDPHR), the main political party of the Rohingya ethnic minority in Burma. (National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma: Burma's May 27, 1990 Democratic Election Records by Khin Kyaw Han on 27 May 2006, translated from Burmese to English by AAPP) It has been said that “U Kyaw Min is regarded by the Rohingyas as the ray of hope as well as the crown of their respect…” (News from Bangladesh 31Jan2008) U Kyaw Min developed into a leader, not only with the Rohingya people, but amongst many his community. On 27 May 1990 U Kyaw Min was elected as Member of Parliament (MP) at the 1990 Multi-party Democratic General Election from Buthidaung Township Constituency No. l in Arakan State. He received 30,997 votes which was 74.39% of the total ballots cast. Three other NDPHR candidates also won Parliamentary Seats in Arakan State. (National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma: Burma's May 27, 1990 Democratic Election Records by Khin Kyaw Han on 27 May 2006, translated from Burmese to English by AAPP) During the 1990 election, the democratic parties won in a landslide, with NDPHR’s ally, the National League for Democracy party, “gaining 392 of the 485 seats, much to the surprise of the thenruling State Law and Order Restoration Council (SLORC).” (Bangkok Post 12Jul1998) Ultimately, the election results were not acknowledged by the ruling military regime, and the democratic parties were prohibited from forming the government. In the years following the election, the Burmese military regime harassed and arrested numerous elected Members of Parliament, including U Kyaw Min. “Through the Election Commission, the military dismissed from Parliament all MPs who have been charged with an offence and had others banned from running in future elections.” (Bangkok Post 12Jul1998) On 18 March 1992, the military regime banned U Kyaw Min’s NDPHR political party under Order No. 8/92. (News from Bangladesh 31Jan2008) Shortly thereafter, U Kyaw Min moved his family to Tamwe Township in Rangoon Division, but also maintained his family home in Buthidaung Township in Arakan State. He Page 3 of 5

continued his political activism. (Asian Human Rights Commission 23Feb2009) As a political and ethnic target, U Kyaw Min has been arrested and detained for short periods on at least three prior occasions: 1. In 1992 U Kyaw Min was detained by military intelligence during Operation “Prataya.” He was held for three months without charge. 2. U Kyaw Min was arrested a second time in 1992 and held in detention for 15 days while a United Nations official was visiting Buthidaung Township; this was to prevent U Kyaw Min from meeting the official. 3. In 1994 an insurgent group in western Arakan State launched several offensives. Although U Kyaw Min never supported separatism, and instead supported a peaceful coexistence of all communities in Arakan State, he was arrested by the military intelligence and detained for 45 days. (Asian Human Rights Commission 23Feb2009 and News from Bangladesh 31Jan2008) On 4 December 2002 U Kyaw Min was selected to be a member of the Committee Representing the People's Parliament (CRPP). (National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma: Burma's May 27, 1990 Democratic Election Records by Khin Kyaw Han on 27 May 2006, translated from Burmese to English by AAPP) The CRPP was formed by the National League for Democracy (NLD) on 16 September 1998, with the support of 251 elected Members of Parliament, including MPs from other parties. The CCRP was formed the after the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) failed to respond to renewed calls to recognize the results of the 1990 elections. The original 10-member CRPP has since been expanded to 19 members, including more representatives from ethnic national parties, such as U Kyaw Min. ARREST DETAILS: On 17 March 2005 around midnight special police agents went to U Kyaw Min’s home in Tamwe Township, Rangoon Division and arrested him for “questioning.” The reason for his arrest was unknown. (DVB 18Mar2005) U Kyaw Min was taken to Insein Prison in Rangoon for interrogation. During that time (at least one month), he was not allowed any family visits. His family members were seriously concerned about his health condition, specifically his high blood pressure, since they were not permitted to provide him with medicine or basic necessities. (DVB 12Apr2005) On 5 May 2005, U Kyaw Min’s wife Daw Tiza (a.k.a. Daw Khaw Tiza) and his adult daughters Khin Khin Nu and Wai Wai Nu were also arrested and taken to Insein Prison; however, all family members were detained separately and not allowed to see each other. (DVB 28Jun2005) In the weeks that followed, U Kyaw Min’s younger son, Aung Naing (a.k.a. Nuu Man), who had initially escaped imprisonment, was arrested and taken to Insein Prison; an older son went into hiding to avoid being arrested. (DVB 18Oct2005) DETAILS OF IMPRISONMENT: ORIGINAL TRIAL: U Kyaw Min and his family were all tried in a closed court at Insein Prison. (DVB 28Jun2005). U Kyaw Min, Prisoner No. 0334/C, was tried with his following family members: • Wife: Daw Tiza (a.k.a. Daw Khaw Tiza), ±55 years old in 2005, Prisoner No. 1276/C • Son: Aung Naing (a.k.a. Nuu Man), ±26 years old in 2005, Prisoner No. 4188/Ei • Daughter: Khin Khin Nu, ±25 years old in 2005, Prisoner No. 1278/C • Daughter: Wai Wai Nu, ±20 years old in 2005, Prisoner No. 1277/C (Asian Human Rights Commission 23Feb2009) U Kyaw Min was allowed to hire NLD defense lawyer U Nyan Win to defend his family. (DVB 12May2005) On at least two occasions prison authorities denied permission for U Nyan Win to meet with his clients, and U Nyan Win was not informed of exactly which allegations the authorities were making against his clients. (DVB 20May2005 and DVB 02Jun2005) Most reports indicated that defense lawyer U Nyan Win was not actually allowed to attend the trial due to being denied access into the closed court sessions. (DVB Page 4 of 5

06Sep2005 and Asian Human Rights Commission 23Feb2009) U Kyaw Min and all four of his family members were charged with violating the following two laws: 1. 1982 Citizenship Law, Section 18 – “A citizen who has acquired citizenship by making a false representation or by concealment shall have his citizenship revoked, and shall also be liable to imprisonment for a term of ten years and to a fine of fifty thousand [kyats].” (Asian Human Rights Commission 23Feb2009) 2. 1950 Emergency Provisions Act, Section 5(J) – For “affecting the morality or conduct of the public or a group of people in a way that would undermine the security of the Union or the restoration of law and order.” For “spreading false news” about their ethnicity. (ALTSEAN 15Aug2006; and Asian Human Rights Commission 23Feb2009) In order to penalize U Kyaw Min and his family far beyond the 10-year maximum imprisonment established by the 1982 Citizenship Act, “the police lodged four identical separate cases for different members of the family even though the offence was the same and under law they should have been lodged as a single case. All four were brought against Kyaw Min, even though there is nothing in the section of law under which they were charged to penalize someone giving false information concerning someone else, i.e. for his family members. The police also lodged a separate case against each under the emergency regulations that in lying about their identities the family had ‘spread false news,’ even though the section was completely irrelevant to the case.” (Asian Human Rights Commission 23Feb2009) “Kyaw Min explained to the court, in which he was not represented by a lawyer, that his family is Rohingya but because this is not an officially recognized ethnic group that they had gone along with whatever the officials had put down [i.e., Indian] for the purposes of ethnicity in the past. However, the court rejected this argument and found them guilty of lying about their identity.” (Asian Human Rights Commission 23Feb2009) On 29 July 2005 the Rangoon Western District Court judge found all five family members guilty and sentenced them as follows: • U Kyaw Min: 47 years imprisonment + 50,000 kyat fine (four counts under the 1982 Citizenship Law, Section 18 and one count under the 1950 Emergency Provisions Act, Section 5(J)) • Daw Tiza, Aung Naing, Khin Khin Nu, and Wai Wai Nu: 17 years imprisonment + 50,000 kyat fine each (one count each under the 1982 Citizenship Law, Section 18 and one count under the 1950 Emergency Provisions Act, Section 5(J)) The court fined each of the five family members 50,000 kyat (approximately equivalent to $7,800 USD per person) or two (2) additional years in prison each if they could not pay. “[The] hefty sentences were imposed on the family after Kyaw Min refused to sign a pledge promising to quit the CRPP, according to sources close to the family.” (DVB 02Aug2005) APPEAL PROCESS: 1. U Kyaw Min’s appeal to the Rangoon Divisional Court was dismissed on 9 December 2005 by Presiding Judge Myint Win. 2. U Kyaw Min’s appeal to the Supreme Court was dismissed without a hearing on 3 May 2006 by Judge U Khin Maung Aye. U Kyaw Min’s lawyer lodged the appeal at the Supreme Court on a range of grounds pointing to the factual and procedural flaws in the original case; however, the court dismissed the appeal without considering the substance. 3. An additional appeal to the Supreme Court Special Appellate Bench was dismissed on 23 August 2006 by Justices Dr. Tin Aung Aye and U Chit Lwin. (Asian Human Rights Commission 23Feb2009)
*This profile was prepared by the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (Burma) on 30 December 2009.*

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