FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Today, a Burmese court charged Reuters journalists Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo with violating the colonial-era “Official Secrets Act” for investigating and reporting on an army massacre of Rohingya. In a major setback for press freedom in Burma, the journalists will now face trial and a possible sentence of up to 14 years.
“A free press is fundamental to democracy. Journalists not only keep citizens informed but they hold leaders accountable. They should never be unjustly targeted, threatened, or persecuted for simply doing their jobs. We call on the Burmese government to allow these journalists to return to their families and continue their work,” said Ambassador Haley.
In addition to the imprisonment of these two journalists, Police Captain Moe Yan Naing, who testified to their innocence, has also been detained, raising further serious concerns about rule of law in Burma.