Sunday, Nov 18 2018 | Time 08:57 Hrs(IST)
image
  • Death toll from California wildfire rises to 76 - Police
  • May says Parliament take Britain ‘Back to Square One’ if rejects Brexit deal
  • UN Secretary General says ‘No Alternative’ to Paris Agreement on climate change
  • Netanyahu to meet finance minister to prevent snap elections
  • British PM busy seeking support for her Brexit deal
  • Iran, India discuss trade cooperation under US sanctions
  • US State Dept refutes ‘Inaccurate’ reports of Khashoggi Case
  • US State Dept refutes ‘Inaccurate’ reports of Khashoggi Case
  • Militants shelling attack kills 18 Syria servicemen in Latakia Province
  • Number of people injured during protests in France rises to 227
  • HPU prospectus scam: university puts errant official under suspension
  • BJP Kerala General Secretary K Surendran arrested
  • UIDAI CEO AB Pandey appointed as next Revenue Secretary
  • Delhi Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash transferred to Telecom dept
World Share

Vague laws stifling independent journalism in Myanmar: Report

United Nations, Sep 12 (UNI) Describing the conviction in Myanmar of two Reuters journalists last week as a “particularly outrageous” example of judicial harassment against the media there, “vague and over-broad” laws have made it impossible for the press to do its job in the country, without fear or favour, a new United Nations report has found.
Michelle Bachelet, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, whose Office (OHCHR) issued the report Tuesday, underscored that the findings show the severity of dangers independent journalists face in Myanmar.
“Where journalists are jailed for merely visiting an area controlled by an armed group, when their sources are jailed for providing information from conflict zones, and where a Facebook post can result in criminal defamation accusations – such an environment is hardly conducive to a democratic transition,” she said.
According to the report, The Invisible Boundary: Criminal prosecutions of journalism in Myanmar, laws relating to telecommunications, official secrets, unlawful associations, electronic transactions and even obscure laws relating to imports and aircraft, have been used to try and prosecute journalists in recent years.
In one case, three journalists were arrested in June 2017 for covering an event to mark the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking in an area under the control of an armed group in northern Shan state. They were charged under the Unlawful Associations Act. The case was dropped, but not before they had spent 67 days in detention.
In another case, two Christian Baptists from Kachin state, were arrested in December 2016 under the same law, for assisting journalists who had travelled to northern Shan state to report on the conflict there. They were held incommunicado for several weeks and eventually received prison sentences of two years and three months having also been charged under an Import-Export statute, relating to their alleged use of unlicensed motorbikes, the report states.
Other cases involved the invocation of the same Law against journalists for using a drone to film the national parliament building and a Telecommunications statute was used to target a journalist for posts on the social media site, Facebook.
The report also refers to “the instrumentalization of the law and of the courts by the Government and military in what constitutes a political campaign against independent journalism,” and the “failure of the judiciary to uphold the fair trial rights of those targeted.”
In conclusion, the report also sets out a series of recommendations, including a review of all legal provisions impacting the right to freedom of expression with a view to repealing or amending those that do not comply with international human rights law.
It also calls for the immediate and unconditional release of the two Reuters journalists, Kyaw Soe Oo (also known as Moe Aung) and Thet Oo Maung (also known as Wa Lone), as well as all other journalists currently in detention for the “legitimate and peaceful exercise of their right to freedom of expression”.
The two Reuters journalists were sentenced to seven years’ imprisonment under the Official Secrets Act in connection with their coverage of a massacre, by the military, of men from the minority Muslim Rohingya community in the Inn Dinn village, Rakhine state.
UNi XC-SNU 1521
More News
UNGA committee approves resolution on rights violations against Rohingyas

UNGA committee approves resolution on rights violations against Rohingyas

17 Nov 2018 | 10:42 PM

Dhaka, Nov 17 ( UNI) Strongly condemning all violations of human rights in Myanmar, the third committee of the UN General Assembly in New York has adopted a resolution calling for a full and independent investigation to ensure that those responsible are held accountable.

 Sharesee more..
Pak PM to meet UAE royalty during day-long visit

Pak PM to meet UAE royalty during day-long visit

17 Nov 2018 | 10:12 PM

Islamabad, Nov 17 (UNI) Prime Minister Imran Khan will travel to the United Arab Emirates(UAE) on Sunday for a day-long visit.

 Sharesee more..
New Maldives President seeks Indian assistance: Modi hopes to strengthen ties

New Maldives President seeks Indian assistance: Modi hopes to strengthen ties

17 Nov 2018 | 9:49 PM

Male (Maldives), Nov 17 (UNI) New President of Maldives Ibrahim Mohamed Solih on Saturday held a crucial meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi here and sought Indian assistance for housing, increased development as well as for establishing water and sewerage systems in outlying islands.

 Sharesee more..

London property case to be referred to Accountability Bureau: Pak PM's aide

17 Nov 2018 | 7:57 PM

Islamabad, Nov 17 (UNI) Special Assistant to the Pakistan Prime Minister on Accountability Shahzad Akbar on Saturday claimed the Assets Recovery Unit has traced the Sharif family’s new property in central London and was referring the case to the National Accountability Bureau (NAB).

 Sharesee more..

Solih takes over as new President of Maldives, Modi hopes to work with new regime closely

17 Nov 2018 | 7:33 PM

Male (Maldives), Nov 17 (UNI) Ibrahim Mohamed Solih was on Saturday sworn in as the new President of Maldives.

 Sharesee more..
image