AHA Statement on Professor Sean Turnell

The Australian Historical Association expresses solidarity with and support for Professor Sean Turnell, who has recently been sentenced to three years imprisonment for breaching Myanmar’s secrets law. The trial was itself held in secret and Australian government representatives were denied access to the court. The Australian government has rejected the court’s ruling. Professor Turnell is a distinguished economist and economic historian whose work as an adviser to Aung San Suu Kyi, the Prime Minister of Myanmar, drew on his economic and historical expertise to help strengthen the economy of that country and thereby improve the lives of its people. Professor Turnell’s sentence came at the end of 20 months in prison. We call on the military regime in Myanmar to release Professor Turnell and allow him to leave the country and re-join his family in Australia.