16 April, 2021

Chiang Mai, Thailand

Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APWLD) along with The World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) and the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) in the framework of the Observatory for the protection of human rights defenders, Proyecto de Derechos Económicos, Sociales y Culturales AC (ProDESC), Women’s Global Network for Reproductive Rights (WGNRR), MADRE and Mesoamerican Women Human Rights Defenders Initiative vehemently condemn the illegal arrest of Thin Thin Aung and other women human rights defenders in Burma/Myanmar.

Thin Thin Aung is a co-founder of Mizzima News Agency and the Women’s League of Burma (WLB), the founder of Women for Justice formerly known as Women’s Rights and Welfare Association of Burma (WRWAB). Since the 1988 uprising, Thin Thin Aung has dedicated her life to the fight for democracy and human rights in Burma/Myanmar. She has spent most of her time advocating locally and internationally for justice for women’s human rights and intersectional feminist movement in Burma/Myanmar.

Thin Thin Aung, who has been reportedly unwell for some time, was arrested without any charges on 8 April from Botahtaung Township in Yangon Subsequent actions of the military is unmovable evidence that Thin Thin Aung was targeted because of her work in defending democracy, human rights, freedom and peace in Burma/Myanmar. The violent and shameful act of the military includes raiding her apartment in Yangon on April 9 to illegally take all her properties and personal belongings away. The military’s violent attacks on protestors have not stopped the powerful, courageous work of Thin Thin Aung and other WHRDs who have dedicated their lives to the struggle for justice in Burma/Myanmar.
We are particularly concerned about the health and safety of Thin Thin Aung.

We call on the military junta of Burma/Myanmar to:

  • Immediately release Thin Thin Aung and guarantee her physical and psychological integrity
  • Stop criminalisation of and violent attacks against WHRDs and other human rights defenders in Burma/Myanmar

We call for universal and collective responsibility of the international community to protect the peoples of Burma/Myanmar from the ongoing state sponsored genocide, war crimes and the crimes against humanity. We particularly call on the attention of the UN Special Procedures mandate holders to issue a joint statement for the immediate release of Thin Thin Aung and all other human rights defenders who have been illegally detained or arrested.

For further information please contact

Neha Gupta, Information and Communication Officer, APWLD at neha@apwld.org