Commenting on the detention of numerous elected officials and others in Myanmar including Australian national Sean Turnell by the military junta, Amnesty International Australia Campaigner Tim O’Connor said:
“We’re aware of reports that an Australian citizen, Sean Turnell, has been detained in Myanmar.
“We urge the Myanmar military to immediately acknowledge whether he is in custody and on what legal basis, and establish his whereabouts, as for those arbitrarily detained since the coup a week ago.
“If Mr. Turnell is in state custody, we urge authorities to ensure that pending his release he is held in an official place of detention, has immediate access to independent lawyers, doctors and family members and is effectively protected against ill-treatment.
“Like all others arrested since the 1 February coup, if he cannot be charged with a recognizable criminal offence under international law then he must be immediately released.
“Foreign nationals detained must be informed of their right and given all reasonable facilities to communicate with, and receive assistance from representatives, of their or an appropriate international organisation if they so desire.
“Myanmar’s military coup so far has been an abject spectacle of arbitrary arrests and widespread telecommunications blackouts, all designed to bolster the rule of an emboldened, rights-abusing military.”