Myanmar court jails satirical performers
A court in Myanmar yesterday sentenced five satirical performers to a year in jail with hard labour for shows that criticised the army’s role in politics. The five were arrested after taking part in Thangyat, a centuries-old tradition during Myanmar’s new year water festival in April. The tradition pokes fun at the flaws and foibles of the social and political system. It features a mix of comedy and slam poetry set to drums. During shows and a Facebook broadcast, the five criticised the army’s share of a quarter of the seats in parliament and shared pictures of a dog in a military jacket. They denied any wrongdoing in a case condemned by human rights groups as a negative step in Myanmar’s faltering transition to democracy.