MEIKHTILA, Myanmar – Six Muslim men and one minor have been sentenced to jail terms ranging from life to two years in prison for involvement in the killing of a Buddhist monk during sectarian violence in central Myanmar.
Thein Than Oo, a lawyer defending the men, said one of his clients was given life in prison for murder. Myat Ko Ko was also sentenced to an additional two years for unlawful assembly and two for religious disrespect.
A dispute at a Muslim-owned gold shop in the town of Meikhtila on March 20 triggered rioting by Buddhists and small-scale retaliation by their Muslim targets. Over several days at least 43 people were killed and 12,000 displaced, most of the victims being Muslims. The unrest later spread to other parts of central Myanmar.