Myanmar arrests former British ambassador and her husband


Myanmar’s military junta has arrested a former British ambassador and her husband, according to several people familiar with the situation. A government spokesman said Thursday evening that the couple had been charged with violating the country’s immigration laws.

Vicky Bowman served as the British Ambassador from 2002 to 2006 and is now the Director of the Myanmar Center for Responsible Business. Her husband, Hein Lin, is a prominent artist and former political prisoner.

According to local reports, the couple was arrested at their residence in Yangon and sent to the notorious Insen Prison.

A Foreign Affairs spokesman in London said in a brief statement that authorities were “concerned by the arrest of a British woman” and were providing consular assistance.

The arrests are likely to further isolate Myanmar’s military junta, known as the Tatmadaw, which seized power in a coup last year. The military has cracked down on dissent, arresting thousands of protesters and political figures, including Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi.

Human Rights Watch called for the couple’s release, saying the arrests were “humiliating and unacceptable”.

“The Tatmadaw shows once again why they are among the worst abusers of rights in Southeast Asia,” Deputy Asia Director Phil Robertson Tweeted.

On Thursday, Britain imposed restrictions on military-related businesses, although the announcement was unrelated to the arrests. Britain has also supported the genocide case against Myanmar at the International Court of Justice for its treatment of Rohingya Muslims. expressed support For Myanmar’s Government of National Unity, a shadow administration that operates in exile.

Britain was among several countries protesting the junta’s recent tenure Execution of pro-democracy activists. The nation’s top diplomat, Pete Volles, said Last month he was “forced to leave by the junta but glad we didn’t push to legalize their brutal rebellion.”

Cabato reported from Manila and Tan from Singapore.

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