(Bangkok) – Burmese authorities should not pursue a criminal complaint brought under Burma’s privacy law against a Facebook user for posts critical of a state chief minister, Human Rights Watch said today.
Parliament should promptly amend the privacy law, enacted in March 2017, to eliminate the provision criminalizing harm to reputation.
“It’s totally absurd that Burma is using a law protecting privacy as a club to punish criticism of a government official's job performance,” said Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director. “The police should decline to proceed with this case and parliament should amend the law to prevent such cases in the future.”
Earlier this month, Aung Ko Ko Lwin, from Thaton town in Mon State, posted a video clip of the Mon State chief minister, Dr. Aye Zaw, urging residents of Thaton township to “eat only a dish of curry” at mealtime to bring down food prices. He also posted comments criticizing the minister for failing to respond to requests for an electrical transformer for the town’s central market and for LED safety signals at a railway crossing that is the site of frequent accidents.