KyaemonJanuary 7, 20104min1770

Burmese whistle-blowers sentenced to death – BBC source


Two Burmese officials have been sentenced to death for leaking details of secret government visits to North Korea and Russia, the BBC has learned.

The officials were also found guilty of leaking information about military tunnels allegedly built in Burma by North Korea, a source in Burma said.

A third person was jailed for 15 years, the source added.

The military rulers in Burma (Myanmar) have so far made no public comments on the case.
The source told BBC Burmese that Win Naing Kyaw, a former army major, and

Thura Kyaw, a clerk at the European desk of Burma’s foreign ministry, had been sentenced to death by a court in Rangoon on Thursday.

They were found guilty of leaking information about government visits to North Korea and Russia, which reportedly took place in 2008 and 2006.

The two men were also convicted of leaking details of a network of tunnels reportedly being built in Burma.

It is thought the tunnels were built to house communications systems, possible weapons factories and troops in the event of an invasion.

The third man, Pyan Sein, was given 15 years in prison on Thursday.
Burma still has capital punishment, but it has not carried out executions in recent years.


Two Receive Death Sentence for Information Leak


A former military officer and a foreign affairs official were sentenced to death and another foreign affairs official was sentenced to long-term imprisonment on Thursday in a special court of the Rangoon Northern District held in Insein Prison, according to Insein prison sources.

Win Naing Kyaw, a former personal staff officer assigned to the State Peace and Development Council’s Secretary-2, the late Lt-Gen Tin Oo, was sentenced to death under the State Emergency Act III for leaking military secrets to the exiled media.

Win Naing Kyaw also received a 20-year sentence for violation of the Electronic Act and holding illegal foreign currency. The Electronic Act prohibits sending information, photos or video damaging to the regime abroad via the Internet.

Thura Kyaw, aka Aung Aung, of the ministry of foreign affairs office was also sentenced to death under the state emergency act.

Pyan Sein of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs received a 15-year sentence for violation of the Electronic Act.

The three were arrested after information and photos about Gen Shwe Mann’s trip to North Korea were leaked to exiled news media last year. The trip involved procuring military arms, tunnel building and other matters.

Dozens of officials in the Ministry of Defense and Ministry of Foreign Affairs, including Col Kyaw Kyaw Win, who was director general of the State Peace and Development Council, were also arrested, military sources said. The status of their cases is not known.

After the information leak, the junta made a significant reshuffle at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs that affected more than 70 positions, including two directors, four deputy directors and eight assistant directors. It is not known if the reshuffle was directly a result of the information leak.

Yin Yin Oo, a sister of former deputy minister Kyaw Thu, who was the director of the ministry’s influential political department, was transferred to Saudi Arabia to a counselor post.

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