House Arrest of Deposed Prime Minister Relaxed
covering burma and southeast asia
Friday, October 07, 2022

House Arrest of Deposed Prime Minister Relaxed

By THE IRRAWADDY Monday, March 3, 2008


Former Burmese Prime Minister Gen Khin Nyunt and his family members have been allowed some limited freedom outside of their home where they have been held under house arrest since 2004, according to Rangoon sources.

The family members of Khin Nyunt and the former spy master himself have been allowed to visit religious sites, including Shwedagon Pagoda, and other locations, according to well-informed sources.

Gen Khin Nyunt and his family members have been allowed some limited freedom, sources in Rangoon say.
Eyewitnesses recently confirmed that the disgraced prime minister, who is said to have grown a beard and a moustache, has also visited a meditation center which he helped to built at Thanlyin (Syriam) Township, believed to be his birthplace, located on the southeast side of the Rangoon River.

Dr Khin Win Shwe, the wife of Khin Nyunt, was seen making merit at Shwedagon Pagoda in late February. She was with a female companion, said a source.

In October 2004, Khin Nyunt, now 69, was removed from power and placed under house arrest on charges of insubordination and corruption.

He was convicted of all charges and given a 44-year suspended sentence in 2005. Since then, he and his family members have been under house arrest with heavy surveillance and security guards around their home in a luxury housing compound in Rangoon—a very lenient punishment, many observers said. 

A source speculated that the new, limited freedom enjoyed by Khin Nyunt and his family is a sign the regime no longer sees him as a serious threat.

In addition, the ruling generals in Naypyidaw reportedly offered Khin Nyunt a role in the development of the “cyber-city” to be located near Maymyo, also known as Pyin U Lwin. The new city’s official name is “Yadanabon Naypyidaw.”

The former spy chief reportedly asked for the freedom of his close supporters who were purged with him and are now serving prison sentences in various parts of Burma.

“The deal did not go through because Khin Nyunt asked for all his men to be freed," the source said.

In October 2004, the Office of the Chief of Military Intelligence (OCMI) was dismantled and several of its mid and high-ranking officials were arrested and given long prison terms. Many prominent figures in the OCMI department were purged. Only two former top-ranking OCMI officials—Maj-Gen Kyaw Win and Brig-Gen Kyaw Thein—escaped the 2004 purge and continue to live in Rangoon.

Maj-Gen Kyaw Win, 63, a former deputy chief of OCMI, is believed to be a consultant with Burma’s Military Affairs Security (MAS)—renamed after the purge in 2004.

MAS is headed by Lt-Gen Myint Swe, who is considered Snr-Gen Than Shwe’s protégé. The MAS department is no longer viewed to be as powerful or as feared, according to observers.

Please read our policy before you post comments. Click here
E-mail:   (Your e-mail will not be published.)
You have characters left.
Word Verification: captcha Type the characters you see in the picture.

more articles in this section