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Britain says Reuters journalists jailed in Myanmar are innocent

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Britain says Reuters journalists jailed in Myanmar are innocent

By Guy Faulconbridge

 

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Britain's Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt is seen with a copy of "Jay Jay the Journalist" written by Wa Lone, one of two Reuters reporters currently imprisoned in Myanmar, whilst working in his office in London, Britain, December 20, 2018. Picture taken December 20, 2018. REUTERS/Toby Melville

 

LONDON (Reuters) - Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said on Friday that two Reuters journalists jailed in Myanmar on charges of breaking the country's Official Secrets Act were innocent and that Britain had serious concerns about due process in the case.

 

Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo were found guilty in September after a trial at a Yangon district court in a case that has raised questions about Myanmar's progress towards democracy and triggered an outcry from diplomats and human rights advocates.

 

Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi said in September that the jailing of the reporters had nothing to do with freedom of expression. She said they were not jailed because they were journalists.

 

In a sign of the level of concern among world powers about the case, Britain's foreign policy chief took the unusual step of recording a short video to show his support for the jailed Reuters journalists.

 

"We want the world to remember these two journalists, not just because we believe they are innocent, but also because this is a year when we have seen a big increase in the number of journalists who have been locked up and indeed far worse - murdered," Hunt said.

 

There were 251 journalists jailed for doing their jobs as of Dec. 1, the Committee to Protect Journalists said in an annual study earlier this month.

 

At least 53 journalists were killed around the world between January 1 and December 14, 2018, according to the CPJ, a U.S.-based nonprofit that promotes press freedom.

 

Britain's Hunt said that at a time when people were looking forward to spending time with their families, it was time to reflect on the fate of the two Reuters journalists.

 

They "are both in prison this Christmas because they wanted to report of the Rakhine crisis where there has been some alleged genocide against the Rohingya people in Burma," Hunt said.

 

The Reuters reporters, who pleaded not guilty, said they were handed papers by police shortly before they were detained, and a police witness testified that they had been set up.

 

They had been investigating the killing of 10 Rohingya men and boys as part of a military response to insurgent attacks.

 

"We are very worried about due process in this case - it is something that I have raised with Aung San Suu Kyi," said Hunt. He did not elaborate further on the British concerns about the case.

 

Lawyers for the two Reuters reporters have lodged an appeal against their conviction and sentence.

 

 

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-- © Copyright Reuters 2018-12-22

 

 

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Aung San Suu Kyi has certainly changed her tune hasn't she? She supports everything the government does now she's in it. What a disappointment....but why am I surprised? Seems all these top elite people hanker for power so they can abuse it when they get it.

 

Personally I have little sympathy for people who break laws in other countries. Obey the laws in the country you are visiting or live in. If you break laws then expect a jail term and don't whine about it.

 

Here in Thailand we have laws that are different than back in the US or Europe. Personally I have no problem with these different laws and I do my best to conform to them. But some arrogant westerners adopt the position that their laws should be the ones used because their laws are superior to Thai or Burmese laws. 

 

If you can't do the time, then don't do the crime.

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3 hours ago, Pedrogaz said:

Aung San Suu Kyi has certainly changed her tune hasn't she?

Yes, and she's even a Nobel peace prize laureate! 😅 

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9 hours ago, Matt the Cat said:

Yes, and she's even a Nobel peace prize laureate! 😅 

So, like most people in the West we believe all the propaganda about Aung San Su Kyi. What was she supposed to do, go back to her lakeside house for the rest of her life? That's what might have happened if she had criticised the actions of the military, especially so as she would have lost the support of the majority of the Myanmar people. 

DON'T rely on the MSM for the truth about the so called Rohingyas, this is just another special op to get a hold of the offshore oil on the Rakhine coast as well as the huge reserves that are thought to be inland. The Ros were manipulated into helping an armed rebellion, with the aim of forming an Islamic state, called out on the eve of the announcement of Kofi Anan's announcement of the peace plans that he (AND ASSK) for the Rakhine.

On the F***ING EVE.

From what I have heard and read, the Ros were thoroughly disagreeable neighbours and still are. Plenty of videos of Muslims atrocities, very few (I haven't found any) of atrocities committed by what Reuters and Co deem fit to call "Buddhist extremists". 10 ARSA militants were indeed executed in Inn Din but people like the Reuters journalists wouldn't bother to report on why and how that happened. 

They don't have much to say about the 95 Hindus killed by ARSA with the help of people from the neighbouring village or other atrocities. 

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Burma reminds me of alot of some Thai women that ex-pats meet, not long after arriving here. They are well coached, and know exactly what to say. They each have their own story, and it is exactly what we want to hear, and believe.

 

There is no doubt that the entire world was conned by Burma and their army. And especially by Aung San Suu Kyi, who is a despot, a racist, a hater, and a denier of truth. Not much has changed there, other than the massive Chinese takeover of the economy. The fake liberalization was about easing sanctions, making it easier to raise foreign capital, and ensuring that the top 50 generals could continue to operate their multi billion dollar a year gem smuggling and opium smuggling franchises. Virtually any and all news coming from the despot Burmese government, and especially the army, is fake news, and a deflection from the truth. 

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3 hours ago, spidermike007 said:

Burma reminds me of alot of some Thai women that ex-pats meet, not long after arriving here. They are well coached, and know exactly what to say. They each have their own story, and it is exactly what we want to hear, and believe.

 

There is no doubt that the entire world was conned by Burma and their army. And especially by Aung San Suu Kyi, who is a despot, a racist, a hater, and a denier of truth. Not much has changed there, other than the massive Chinese takeover of the economy. The fake liberalization was about easing sanctions, making it easier to raise foreign capital, and ensuring that the top 50 generals could continue to operate their multi billion dollar a year gem smuggling and opium smuggling franchises. Virtually any and all news coming from the despot Burmese government, and especially the army, is fake news, and a deflection from the truth. 

Well there you go, nobody in Myanmar asked for the Nobel prize, or the deification that the Western press heaped on her. Many in Myanmar have good reason to hate the military and at present the only hope they have is ASSK, I know that many see her as a real person and not as the idol of virtue that the Western press convinced you that she was. 

I see no evidence that she is a despot, she can do nothing about the military's offensive actions against the northern tribes although you may have noticed that a cease fire has recently been called? She is quite rightly reluctant to interfere in the judicial system. The Ros were always considered to be a foreign element in the Rakhine, there are still people around that remember when they massacred 30 000 non-Muslims in 1942 and drove another 50 000 south. You know, same as they are doing in Assam and the CHT but you know all about that, don't you?

We won't even mention the 2 MILLION Hindus that got killed in Bangladesh or the further 2 MILLION that got driven out.

It may well be that this causes feelings of what you might call racism or Buddhist extremism I call it patriotism even if that is PC uncorrect.

China is gaining in influence because the West (principally interested in the oil and gas in Rakhine state) is threatening sanctions and boycotts (which would logically lead to an Islamic state in Myanmar). Repeat after me: there wasn't a genocide and there isn't an ongoing massacre as has recently been claimed.

 

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3 hours ago, cooked said:

Well there you go, nobody in Myanmar asked for the Nobel prize, or the deification that the Western press heaped on her. Many in Myanmar have good reason to hate the military and at present the only hope they have is ASSK, I know that many see her as a real person and not as the idol of virtue that the Western press convinced you that she was. 

I see no evidence that she is a despot, she can do nothing about the military's offensive actions against the northern tribes although you may have noticed that a cease fire has recently been called? She is quite rightly reluctant to interfere in the judicial system. The Ros were always considered to be a foreign element in the Rakhine, there are still people around that remember when they massacred 30 000 non-Muslims in 1942 and drove another 50 000 south. You know, same as they are doing in Assam and the CHT but you know all about that, don't you?

We won't even mention the 2 MILLION Hindus that got killed in Bangladesh or the further 2 MILLION that got driven out.

It may well be that this causes feelings of what you might call racism or Buddhist extremism I call it patriotism even if that is PC uncorrect.

China is gaining in influence because the West (principally interested in the oil and gas in Rakhine state) is threatening sanctions and boycotts (which would logically lead to an Islamic state in Myanmar). Repeat after me: there wasn't a genocide and there isn't an ongoing massacre as has recently been claimed.

 

Yes. And the Holocaust never happened either. Or the Armenian genocide. All fabrications. 

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28 minutes ago, spidermike007 said:

Yes. And the Holocaust never happened either. Or the Armenian genocide. All fabrications. 

Look sir, I have been following this since 2011, the Muslim riots in 2012 in Maundaw and other places (just after the Chinese signed that pipeline contract that you doubtless know about) and I have seen about 10 videos of Ro atrocities being committed or the aftermath thereof. I haven't seen anything apart from well rehearsed stories (they get repetitive) from interviewees in Camps in Cox' Bazaar that showed convincing evidence of a genocide. The UN decided to change the meaning of the word genocide in 1949 and guess what? Now a genocide can be claimed even if not a single person is killed. The attempted genocide of 1942 by the Ros, the above mentioned genocides in Assam, Bangladesh and the CHT are well proven facts if you care to look. THEY are the ones that were calling out for the death of all infidels in the Rakhine. You know, the usual stuff.

Why bring up the very real genocides of the Holocaust and the Armenians? What has that to do with the price of bananas? I can only assume that when you read my comments you kept on saying to yourself "can't be true Western media and Islamic propaganda tells me something else". Why do you think the EU and the USA are softening their approach to applying sanctions on Myanmar? Partly of course because of the Chinese being ready to move in, and partly because they realise that there is little substance in the accusation of "genocide".

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3 hours ago, cooked said:

Look sir, I have been following this since 2011, the Muslim riots in 2012 in Maundaw and other places (just after the Chinese signed that pipeline contract that you doubtless know about) and I have seen about 10 videos of Ro atrocities being committed or the aftermath thereof. I haven't seen anything apart from well rehearsed stories (they get repetitive) from interviewees in Camps in Cox' Bazaar that showed convincing evidence of a genocide. The UN decided to change the meaning of the word genocide in 1949 and guess what? Now a genocide can be claimed even if not a single person is killed. The attempted genocide of 1942 by the Ros, the above mentioned genocides in Assam, Bangladesh and the CHT are well proven facts if you care to look. THEY are the ones that were calling out for the death of all infidels in the Rakhine. You know, the usual stuff.

Why bring up the very real genocides of the Holocaust and the Armenians? What has that to do with the price of bananas? I can only assume that when you read my comments you kept on saying to yourself "can't be true Western media and Islamic propaganda tells me something else". Why do you think the EU and the USA are softening their approach to applying sanctions on Myanmar? Partly of course because of the Chinese being ready to move in, and partly because they realise that there is little substance in the accusation of "genocide".

OK, good information. I will look into it. Sounds like the story may be much deeper, as you point out.

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5 minutes ago, spidermike007 said:

OK, good information. I will look into it. Sounds like the story may be much deeper, as you point out.

I doubt you will find much. 

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