It comes a month before a summit of regional leaders convenes in the country. The Ministry of Information announced the amnesty, saying the 3,073 prisoners were being freed “on humanitarian grounds.”
It did not refer specifically to political prisoners and most of those released had committed minor crimes.
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The official Political Prisoner Scrutiny Committee said at least 13 of those pardoned had been jailed for political offences and at least eight were former senior military intelligence officers detained after the 2004 ousting of former prime minister Khin Nyunt.
Ye Aung, a member of the scrutiny committee, praised the release but called for 75 political prisoners to be freed.