September 21, 2008 - Dhaka (Narinjara): A Burmese national died on Friday in Bangladesh after languishing for years in a Bangladesh prison, according to a report from prison authorities.
The prisoner was identified as Ko Aung San Oo, aged 39, son of U Shwe Thein, from Sittwe in Arakan. He passed away at the medical college hospital in Chittagong from cancer, just a few days after he was admitted to the hospital.
He was initially arrested by Bangladesh police in the border town Teknaf in 2005 for illegally entering Bangladesh territory without valid travel documents. After his arrest, Bangladesh authorities sentenced him to two years in prison under immigration laws.
His sentenced ended in 2007, but he was unable to return to Burma because the Burmese military government refused to accept any Burmese prisoners from Bangladesh for repatriation.
While he was at Chittagong prison, he developed cancer but was unable to get admitted to a hospital for treatment. He finally received care at the hospital when his health began to deteriorate and his condition began to improve, but the care came too late to save his life.
In several prisons of Bangladesh, there are over 1,000 Burmese prisoners languishing after the end of their sentences because the Burmese authorities refuse to allow their repatriation, despite Bangladesh's desire to hand the detainees over.