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Saturday, May 15, 2021

Japanese Journalist Charged by Myanmar Authorities for Spreading Fake News

Myanmar authorities have now charged Japanese journalist Yuki Kitazumi for allegedly spreading false news, the first foreign journalist accused since the military overthrew the civilian government.

A Japanese embassy official in Yangon said the 45-year-old freelance journalist covering the news in Myanmar, was now charged under Section 505(A) of the Penal Code for incitement or spreading false news. 

Kitazumi could face up to three years in prison. 

Authorities have yet to provide details on the allegations brought against Kitazumi. 

Last month, the military arrested the journalist from his home and detained him in Insein Prison. 

The Japanese government had urged for Kitazumi’s immediate release. 

Rights group Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP) said there are now 766 people killed by the junta while 3, 614 are detained or sentenced. 

On Monday, World Press Freedom Day, the AAPP reported 50 journalists currently detained, half of them have been prosecuted.

“Freedom of press will disintegrate and journalists will be persecuted as long as we have a dictatorship,” the AAPP said. 

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