Myanmar’s military junta has been reported to have charged Japanese journalists under the “fake news” law with recent blows to press freedom since the military seized power.
Kyodo News reported that freelance reporter Yuki Kitazumi was arrested last month and charged with spreading fake news on Monday (World Press Freedom Day).
He is one of the 50 journalists currently being held in Myanmar as part of a military junta crackdown on a widespread protest against the February 1 coup.
Since the expulsion of civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi, the country has been in turmoil and more than 750 people have been killed as security forces struggle to quell almost daily demonstrations against their control.
An unnamed Japanese embassy official said Kitazumi had no health problems after spending several weeks in Insein Prison, Yangon, which has a long and unpleasant reputation for containing political prisoners. Was quoted.
Kitazumi has been detained since April 18, the second arrest since the coup.
In February, he was beaten and temporarily detained during a protest crackdown, but was later released.
Japan has been a top donor of aid to Myanmar for many years and has urged his release.
Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi told Japanese journalists during his trip to the UK, “Of course, we will do our best to release the Japanese people early.”
A total of 766 civilians were killed in military crackdowns on protests, according to the Burmese Political Prisoners Assistance Association (AAPP), a local surveillance group.
In addition to arresting journalists, the generals also sought to crack down on crisis news by shutting down independent media and slowing down the Internet.
According to AAPP, 50 journalists are currently in custody, 25 of whom have been prosecuted and an additional 29 arrest warrants have been issued.
Despite the dangers, protesters continue to go out to the streets on Tuesday with early morning demonstrations in Mandalay, the second largest city, and northern Kachin State.
The military pointed out allegations of fraud in the November elections, defended seizure of power, and accused protesters of rioters and terrorists.
Myanmar Charges Japanese Journalist Over ‘Fake News’ Source link Myanmar Charges Japanese Journalist Over ‘Fake News’