Myanmar: Detained journalists to be charged under colonial-era law

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Myanmar: Detained journalists to be charged under colonial-era law

Post by CEOCambodiaNews » Wed Jun 28, 2017 4:46 pm

- Three Myanmar reporters detained at an undisclosed location by the army will be charged under a colonial-era statute against “unlawful association” and face up to three years in jail, government and army officials have said.

The military arrested the journalists in Myanmar’s northeastern Shan state on Monday after they covered a drug-burning event organised by the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA), an ethnic armed group designated as an “unlawful association” by the Yangon authorities.

The reporters are from two media outlets publishing both in Burmese and English, the Democratic Voice of Burma (DVB) and the Irrawaddy. They were among the few media organisations providing independent coverage of Myanmar when it was under military rule before a democratic transition began in 2011.

The arrests alarmed Myanmar’s media community, fuelling fears that freedom of speech has become increasingly restricted since the government of Nobel peace prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi took power in April last year...
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/ ... al-era-law
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Re: Myanmar: Detained journalists to be charged under colonial-era law

Post by CEOCambodiaNews » Sat Sep 02, 2017 11:59 pm

Myanmar army drops charges against six journalists
1 Sep 2017
WRITER: REUTERS
YANGON -- Myanmar's military on Friday dropped charges against six journalists facing trial on offences ranging from defamation to unlawful association, saying it wanted to work with the media in the interests of the country and its people.

The legal action had sparked fears over curbs on free speech during Myanmar's transition from decades of military rule, under a government led by Nobel Peace Prize winner Suu Kyi, following a landmark 2015 election win.

The military decided to "forgive and drop charges" against the media in an effort to "work together for the interest of the citizens and the country", it said in a statement.

Charges were dropped against three reporters arrested in late June for covering an event organized by the Ta'ang National Liberation Army, an ethnic militia engaged in a stand-off with government troops.

They were charged under a colonial-era law against "unlawful association", which rights watchers said has long been used by Myanmar authorities to arbitrarily arrest and detain people...
http://www.bangkokpost.com/news/asean/1 ... ournalists
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Re: Myanmar: Detained journalists to be charged under colonial-era law

Post by CEOCambodiaNews » Sat Dec 23, 2017 12:52 pm

The crackdown on journalists is beefing up in Myanmar and other SEA countries. Two Reuters journalists were arrested last week in Myanmar.

After Reuters arrests, some Myanmar reporters fear 'it could've been me'
22 December 2017
YANGON (Reuters) - Some human rights advocates say press freedom is under attack in Myanmar, even though decades of rule by a junta that tightly controlled the media has given way to a government led by Nobel peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi.

Myanmar has detained at least 29 journalists in the 20 months since Suu Kyi came to power. While most have since been released on bail, the frequency of arrests - along with the detention last week of two Reuters reporters - has rekindled worries among some journalists trying to cover violence in Rakhine State.

“There are too many risks being added to journalists,” said Sonny Swe, chief executive officer and co-founder of Yangon-based magazine Frontier. “I feel that we are not moving forward, but going back in time for freedom of press and speech.”

As of December, there were five reporters, including the Reuters pair, behind bars.

Reporters Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo - who had worked on Reuters coverage of the crisis in Rakhine - were arrested on Dec. 12 in Yangon. The Ministry of Information said they had “illegally acquired information with the intention to share it with foreign media”. They face up to 14 years in prison under the Official Secrets Act.

Myanmar authorities have said the case has nothing to do with press freedom.

“There are different views, based on where you stand ... There’s press freedom in Myanmar as long as you follow the rules and regulations,” Kyaw Soe, director general of the Ministry of Information, told Reuters by phone on Thursday. He declined to comment further...
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-myan ... SKBN1EG0E0
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Re: Myanmar: Detained journalists to be charged under colonial-era law

Post by CEOCambodiaNews » Sun Dec 31, 2017 5:46 pm

YANGON (Reuters) – Two Reuters journalists who have been detained in Myanmar for the past two weeks were remanded in custody for a further two weeks yesterday as a probe continues into allegations they breached the nation’s Official Secrets Act.

The two journalists had worked on Reuters coverage of a crisis in the western state of Rakhine, where – according to United Nations’ estimates – about 655,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled from a fierce military crackdown on militants.

They were detained on December 12 after they had been invited to meet police officials over dinner. The Ministry of Information has said they “illegally acquired information with the intention to share it with foreign media” and faced charges under the British colonial-era Official Secrets Act, which carries a maximum prison sentence of 14 years.
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Re: Myanmar: Detained journalists to be charged under colonial-era law

Post by CEOCambodiaNews » Wed Jan 10, 2018 8:23 pm

Reuters journalists charged under secrets act in Myanmar
10 January 2018
- Two Reuters journalists have been formally charged with offences under the Official Secrets Act in Myanmar.

Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo were arrested on 12 December after meeting police. They face up to 14 years in prison.

They were covering the situation in Rakhine state where more than 665,000 Muslims have fled a deadly military crackdown, according to the UN.

Reuters says the journalists did nothing wrong. Rights groups have called for their immediate release.

In a statement, editor-in-chief Stephen J Adler said it was "a wholly unwarranted, blatant attack on press freedom".

The Official Secrets Act was introduced under British colonial rule. According to Reuters, prosecutions under it have been rare.
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-42631277
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Re: Myanmar: Detained journalists to be charged under colonial-era law

Post by CEOCambodiaNews » Sat Feb 10, 2018 5:34 am

Rohingya crisis: Reuters journalists held 'for investigating Myanmar killings'
8 February 2018
Reuters has revealed details of an investigation into a mass execution of Rohingyas by soldiers and villagers, which it says lies behind the arrest of two of its journalists in Myanmar.

Wa Lone and Kyaw Seo Oo are awaiting trial, charged with violating the country's Official Secrets Act.

The news agency claims they uncovered evidence the 10 Rohingyas were killed unlawfully in Rakhine state last year.

It hopes this will demonstrate the pair were acting in the public interest.

Reuters editor-in-chief Stephen J Adler said: "When Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo were first arrested, our primary focus was on their safety. Once we understood their legal situation, we, in consultation with Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo and their relatives, decided that it was our responsibility to publish an account of what happened in the village of Inn Din...
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-42956176

Thread with more on Rohingya massacres:
the-rest-the-world/systematic-slaughter ... 18086.html
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Re: Myanmar: Detained journalists to be charged under colonial-era law

Post by CEOCambodiaNews » Thu May 03, 2018 12:44 am

Myanmar jails police officer for testifying in favour of Reuters journalists
April 30, 2018

The Myanmar policeman who recently testified in court that police had framed two jailed Reuters journalists has been sentenced to an undisclosed prison sentence for violating Myanmar’s Police Disciplinary Act, a police spokesman told Reuters on Sunday.

Captain Moe Yan Naing told a Yangon court on 20 April that a Myanmar police chief ordered officers to “trap” the Reuters reporter Wa Lone by luring him to a restaurant to give him secret documents.

“Police Brigadier General Tin Ko Ko gave the documents to Police Lance Corporal Naing Lin and told him to give them to Wa Lone and said that when Wa Lone comes out of the restaurant, the Htaunt Kyant regional police force has to entrap him and arrest him,” Reuters reported Moe Yan Naing telling the court on 20 April.

“Police Brigadier General Tin Ko Ko told the police members, ‘if you don’t get Wa Lone, you will go to jail’”.

After the hearing, Reuters president and editor in chief Stephen Adler said in a statement that the case should be stopped immediately.
http://sea-globe.com/myanmar-jails-poli ... urnalists/
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Re: Myanmar: Detained journalists to be charged under colonial-era law

Post by CEOCambodiaNews » Fri Jul 13, 2018 11:45 pm

Reuters charges another blow to Myanmar’s credibility
Court decision to proceed with Official Secrets Act charges against two Reuters reporters underscores nation's incomplete democratic transition
9 July 2018

The case against two Reuters journalists jailed in Myanmar will proceed, with a judge today giving the green light to hear charges laid under the colonial-era Official Secrets Act.

The pair face a maximum sentence of 14 years and have already served seven months behind bars. Critics say the case against Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, which has galvanized criticism from high profile personages as diverse as the Pope to horror scribe Stephen King, has been flimsy from the outset.
http://www.atimes.com/article/reuters-c ... edibility/
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