The head of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is renewing his call for the government of Burma to release activist and journalist U Win Tin, who has been in prison for 18 years.
UNESCO Director-General Koichiro Matsuura said Friday that this is a sad anniversary marking U Win Tin's arrest in 1989.
He said U Win Tin is now an old man and his health has deteriorated. He urged Burmese authorities to show compassion and free him.
The 77-year-old journalist has served 18 years of a 20-year prison sentence on various charges related to his political activism.
The Burma Media Association says U Win Tin has repeatedly refused to sign a government document requiring him to give up political activities in exchange for his freedom.