YANGON — Once poised to become a world economic power after gaining independence in 1948, Burma — also known as Myanmar — instead became one of the poorest, most repressed societies in the world. In 1962, military general Ne Win took power and implemented policies that isolated Burma from the rest of the world. It became illegal to criticize the government. Newspapers were censored and anyone that spoke out in opposition was arrested and tried by a military court.
After 14 years in prison, “Shell” Aung Aung co-founded the Golden Harp Taxi Network to support political prisoners after their release. The taxi business provides income and a way for former political prisoners to talk about their time in prison, the human rights violations they experienced, and Myanmar’s new government.
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