Myanmar releases Rohingya doctor; rights groups say many political prisoners still behind bars

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YANGON, Myanmar — Rights groups are welcoming the release of a prominent Rohingya Muslim doctor who was arrested while trying to calm rioters during sectarian violence in western Myanmar.

But they say scores of political prisoners remain behind bars.

The case against Tun Aung, sentenced to 17 years in prison following what was considered an unfair trial, garnered widespread international attention.

He was accused of inciting riots between Rohingya Muslims and Rakhine Buddhists in 2012, though activists and witnesses say he as a community leader was asked by authorities to try to intervene.

Myanmar has released more than 1,000 political prisoners since former military rulers handed over power in 2011.

But Equality Myanmar Executive Director Aung Myo Min says that jails continue to be filled with peaceful protesters, journalists and other 'dissenters.'

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