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Yangon student activist sentenced to another 10 years by Myanmar prison court

A court at Yangon’s Insein Prison has sentenced student activist Banyar Soe Htet to an additional 10 years in prison, meaning he is set to serve a total of 84 years, according to acquaintances.

Friday’s terrorism charges come on top of two murder charges related to the killing of Thein Aung, general manager at junta-owned telecommunications company Mytel, along with the shooting of a grocery store owner and his wife in Yangon’s Hlaing township.

Banyar Soe Htet was arrested last November and has been held in Insein Prison ever since.

He was a physics major at Yangon Eastern University when the military seized power in a Feb. 1, 2021 coup.

Banyar Soe Htet became active in the anti-regime Yangon Revolution Force following the coup. The group, mainly composed of students and other young activists, targets junta-related groups and buildings in the country’s business capital.

A YRF official, who didn’t want to be named for security reasons, told RFA that young educated people are being sentenced to prison terms that are even longer than their lives because the junta is manipulating the law to silence dissent.

“The law is in their hands, so they are making arbitrary orders according to their wishes,” the official said.

“Our imprisoned comrades say they are continuing to fight. Our anti-dictatorship actions will not stop because of this unjust sentence.”

More than 21,600 anti-junta activists have been arrested nationwide since the coup, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners.

Some 17,726 of them are still being held in prisons across the country. 

Translated by RFA Burmese. Edited by Mike Firn.