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Burma's Rights Commission Calls for Release of Political Prisoners

Burma's government-appointed human rights body has urged the new president to release political prisoners or transfer them to prisons close to their families.

Burma's state-run newspapers published an open letter Sunday from National Human Rights Commission chairman Win Mra, calling on President Thein Sein to grant amnesty as a reflection of magnanimity or to transfer political prisoners in remote prisons to facilities with easy access for their family members.

The letter praised the release on October 11 of 6,369 prisoners but noted that only 200 of them were classified as prisoners of conscience.

Burma is estimated to hold around 2,000 political prisoners.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.