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Myanmar still detaining rights activists without fair trial: UN envoy

[JURIST] Myanmar [JURIST news archive] continues to arrest and detain human rights activists, denying them fair trials in accordance with international principles, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar Paulo Sérgio Pinheiro [official profile; JURIST news archive] said Tuesday. In a statement [text], Pinheiro also expressed concern about reports that some detainees were in failing health and urgent need of medical treatment.

After being barred from Myanmar in 2003, Pinheiro was allowed to return to the country [JURIST report] in November 2007 after a September crackdown when Myanmar security officers arrested hundreds of Buddhist monks demonstrating against rising fuel prices and human rights abuses by the military regime. At least 10 people were killed when government soldiers shot into protesting crowds, although Pinheiro later estimated that at least 31 people were killed [JURIST reports]. The government has said that some 3,000 people were arrested for participating in the protests. UN News Service has more.

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