Myanmar releases new batch of prisoners ahead of Obama visit

Myanmar's leader has ordered a new prisoner amnesty ahead of a historic visit to the country by President Barack Obama on Monday.

State television said Sunday that President Thein Sein had ordered 66 prisoners released.

It was not clear whether any political prisoners would be among those freed.

A Home Ministry official said Thein Sein signed the amnesty order Friday but the prisoners will be released Monday. The official declined to be named because he is not authorized to speak to the press.

On Thursday, Thein Sein announced an amnesty for 452 prisoners, but the move angered activists because it failed to include prisoners of conscience.

Washington has repeatedly called for the release of all political prisoners, and Myanmar has released hundreds who were jailed under the former military junta.