Volunteer guidelines on offering pro bono advice…
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We wrote to the Ambassador of Myanmar in the United Kingdom
We're concerned about the military coup that took place in Myanmar and the violent repression of protesters, including through the firing of live ammunition which has resulted in numerous casualties.
These actions represent serious human rights abuses. We're also alarmed by accounts of arbitrary arrests and detentions, as well as alleged enforced disappearances of lawyers.
We're also alarmed about reports of ongoing intimidation and harassment of lawyers, as well as lawyers being prevented from providing legal assistance to detained protesters.
These actions deprive the citizens of Myanmar of their access to justice, violate international fair trial guarantees - including the right to have legal representation of one’s own choosing - and the principle of independence of the legal profession. These rights and principles are cornerstones of the rule of law and must be upheld.
We're particularly concerned about the following cases:
The government of Myanmar is reported to be amending several pieces of legislation, including the Penal Code 1860 (s124A) which will criminalise anti-government protest with imprisonment of 20 years.
These amendments also remove obligations of state authorities to bring a detainee before a court within twenty-four hours. Such amendments seem aimed at facilitating the repression of civil dissent and peaceful protest and should be reversed.
We've asked for the authorities in Myanmar to:
We stand in solidarity with members of the legal profession in Myanmar. We'll continue to monitor the cases of other lawyers and human rights defenders in Myanmar.