Three Christian Pastors Detained in Myanmar

Organized Ecumenical Meeting of Prayer for Peace Attended by Christian faithful of all Confessions

Three Christian Pastors
© Fides

Myanmar’s military regime has detained and charged three Christian Pastors from Kachin State who led a prayer for peace in Myanmar. As confirmed by local sources of Fides, the three Pastors organized an ecumenical meeting of prayer for peace which was attended by Christian faithful of all confessions in Myanmar, on March 3, at the worship hall of the municipality of Naw Mon in Kachin state, in Northern Myanmar.
The three arrested are Pastor Koshan Singsar (Kachin Baptist Church), Pastor Z Kaw Htinah (Christ Church), and Pastor M Hawng Di (Rawan Baptist Church). They are prosecuted under Article 505, paragraphs (a) and (b) of the Myanmar Criminal Code which punishes those who spread terror, false news, and subversion against the state or its representatives.

A Catholic priest from the diocese of Myitkyina, who prefers anonymity for security reasons, tells Fides: “These are absurd accusations. We cannot believe what is happening. The military junta of Myanmar is afraid even of prayers for peace and the power of Jesus Christ”, that we invoke with the heart so that it can bring back peace in Myanmar. The junta does not want peace in order to maintain its power and exploit to its own advantage all the economic resources of Myanmar. Prayer is not subversion, it is entrusting oneself to God. We will continue to implore from God the gift of peace”.

Meanwhile, the military junta has ordered the release of 2,296 political prisoners, including journalists, young people, and intellectuals who had taken part in the peaceful demonstrations launched after the coup d’etat on February 1st. According to the army spokesman, the freed people “did not participate in violent acts”. However, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, 5,200 political prisoners are still present in Burmese prisons. Among the public figures in prison, there are numerous lawfully elected parliamentarians in the November 2020 elections and democratic leader Aung San Suu Kyi, on trial for completely artificial charges.