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13 pro-democracy activists arrested in Myanmar

13 pro-democracy activists arrested in Myanmar

Myanmar's military regime arrested at least 13 activists, including leaders of a pro-democracy group that staged a rare protest against massive fuel-price hikes, the official media said Wednesday.
The state-run New Light of Myanmar newspaper said the activists were detained Tuesday night for attempting to undermine the "stability and security of the nation."
A Washington-based activist group, the U.S. Campaign for Burma, said in a release that virtually the entire leadership of the 88 Generation Students was taken to a detention center in Yangon.
Members of the 88 Generation Students were at the forefront of the 1988 pro-democracy uprising and were given lengthy prison terms after the rebellion was brutally suppressed by the military.
Five university students and three members of another activist group were also arrested in separate sweeps by the authorities, the release said.
The arrests came two days after the group led more than 400 people in a protest march through Yangon against the doubling of fuel prices on Aug. 15.
Those reportedly arrested included Min Ko Naing, one of Myanmar's most prominent activists, Mya Aye, Pyone Cho and Yin Htun.
Three members of the Myanmar Development Committee, which had called for a nationwide protest against the sudden hikes, were also arrested along with five university students who were putting up posters demanding the reduction of prices on fuel and basic commodities.
Rumors circulated in Yangon that a nationwide protest against the hikes would be staged Wednesday.
Security in Yangon and Mandalay, the country's second largest city, has been tightened since Monday.
Tension was also reported among teachers and students at schools and universities, traditional centers of protest, with some parents saying they would not send their children to school on Wednesday in light of the rumors.
Myanmar, also known as Burma, has been widely criticized for its human rights violations including the continued house arrest of Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi. The country has been under military control since 1962.