Christopher Eccleston for Amnesty's Burma Campaign

[By Leo Cackett. Also see the photo at Enigma Images]

UPDATE Oct 12, 2011

Burma amnesty brings release of hundreds of prisoners, including about 200 political ones. Democratic Voice of Burma:
"Zarganar, a prominent comedian and vocal government critic, was among those released on Wednesday as part of a pardon of more than 6,300 prisoners by the new leadership, his family said."
Also BBC News article.

Christopher Eccleston (The Observer, Oct 3, 2010):
"Burma is a country of horrors. Torture is commonplace, dissent is not tolerated, and censorship is almost total. It is unbelievable that such regime can continue to exist. Take the case of popular comedian Zarganar. He is currently serving a 35-year prison sentence for criticising the junta's handling of the cyclone relief efforts in 2008. Nothing short of ridiculous. The global community needs to wake up and act as one to condemn the country's ruling military junta and their appalling human rights record."
The Observer gallery of the campaign.

From Enigma Images site:
Leading celebrities are being asked to join people from all over the world, including politicians and leading exiled Burmese activists, to stand in solidarity with Burma's former political prisoners to demand the immediate and unconditional release of all political prisoners currently incarcerated in Burma's notorious prisons.

Full details of the campaign can be seen on the Amnesty website
The campaign is based on the documentary project Even Though I'm Free I Am Not which can be viewed in full on this website

People are being asked to write the name on the palm of their hand of one of the 9 political prisoner cases that Amnesty International are highlighting. They will then have their photo taken and be able to stand in solidarity with Burma's former political prisoners who are leading this campaign.

The photographs will be collected and presented to the summit meeting of political leaders from Asia and Europe, in Brussels in October 2010 - the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM). Amnesty will call on these leaders to press for freedom for Burma's political prisoners, and real human rights for Burma.
Amnesty UK:
Amnesty's action this year on Burma was inspired by the work of James Mackay, a London-based freelance documentary photographer who has photographed more than 160 former Burmese political prisoners now located all around the world - some still in Burma.

For the self-funded project, entitled 'Even Though I'm Free I Am Not', James is travelling around the world, including Burma, to photograph and interview former political prisoners who are coming together to raise awareness for their colleagues who remain in jail. He is working in collaboration with the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (Burma) and Democratic Voice of Burma.
Read about the photoshoot with Eccleston at Even Though I'm Free I Am Not blog.


Anonymous said...

It really annoys me that Christopher doesn't get the credit he so richly deserves in the amount of committment he gives to humanitarian work at a local, national and international level.

Just how many Buddist monks were killed in peaceful protests a couple of years ago? We'll never know the true number because in the West the news is surpressed by oppressives.

It's not just Burma neither; only last week the youngest son of the North Korean dictatorship was chosen to be the next leader of said country.

On a different subject entirely. I also notice on the colour photograph too prominently Christopher's eczema on his elbow.

Alex said...

Well, the most important thing is the effect of your action - and what you feel yourself.

Burma situation is indeed atrocious - see how you can help at the links provided in the post.

Hedgehog said...

Incidentally, there's was just a report on the radio about a new movie that was released this week in Germany, called "This prison where I live", a documentary about Zarganar's life. [url][/url] or translated [url][/url]. Usually I'm not the biggest fan of Michael Mittermeier, as, well, he uses a certain gift of observation but his shows aren't exactly intelligent. He's rather popular here, though. And now it seems he's finally done something good and gotten his name connected to a project like this. Well. If it helps getting the film promoted... It's not on in any cinema close to where I live yet, but I'll keep an eye out.

Alex said...

Interesting. Stand up artists were also supporting Zarganar at this year's Edinburgh Festival. An article from Guardian also mentions Mittermeier - no matter what his comedic level is, he did film undercover in Burma, and that takes guts.

The film will be shown in UK in November, says the site

(Regarding links, I've put a tip how to make them work above the comment box)