Classifieds | Archives | Jobs | About TGT | Contact | Subscribe
 | 
Last updated 9 minutes ago
Printer Friendly Version | TGT@Twitter | RSS Feed |
HOME LOCAL MIDEAST ASIA WORLD BUSINESS SPORT OPINION WRITERS
Myanmar jails Turkish broadcast journalists for two months
November 11, 2017
 Print    Send to Friend

NAYPYITAW: A Myanmar court on Friday jailed for two months two journalists on assignment for Turkey’s state broadcaster, along with their interpreter and driver, for violating an aircraft law by filming with a drone.

Cameraman Lau Hon Meng from Singapore and reporter Mok Choy Lin from Malaysia, were detained on Oct.27 along with their Myanmar interpreter, Aung Naing Soe, and driver, Hla Tin.

The four had been working on a documentary for TRT World, the English-language subsidiary of the Turkish Radio and Television Corporation, when they were detained for attempting to fly a drone near parliament in the capital, Naypyitaw.

None of the four is a Turkish national, but the case has further strained diplomatic ties after President Tayyip Erdogan accused Myanmar’s military of carrying out “genocide” of Rohingya Muslims in the Buddhist-majority country.

Police initially investigated whether they had violated an import-export rule that carries a penalty of up to three years in jail, but the judge opted to introduce a fresh charge of contravening the 1934 Burma Aircraft Act, which carries a maximum sentence of three months.

Both the cameraman and reporter pleaded guilty to the lesser charge, and the judge sentenced all four to two months, according to a Reuters reporter at the hearing.

A fresh hearing will be held on Nov.16 to decide if charges of violating the import-export rules are to be made.

“The detainees admitted that they committed the crime, hoping they would only be fined, so it shocked us when the judge sentenced them to two months,” said defence lawyer Khin Maung Zaw.

The lawyer said he would appeal for the sentence to be reduced to a fine.

Before Friday’s proceedings began, Mok told reporters in the court they were sorry for any disrespect of Myanmar’s laws, but complained that the legal process had lacked transparency.

“We have no idea what is going on, and we are not allowed to speak to our family,” she said.

“And the rules and procedures are not explained to us. We were asked to sign statements that are completely in Burmese that we cannot understand.”

As he was brought to court, interpreter Aung Naing Soe told reporters the four had not been mistreated while in custody, though police had asked about who they had spoken to and trips he made to several of restive Myanmar regions, including Rakhine.

Reuters

Add this page to your favorite Social Bookmarking websites
Comments
 
Post a comment
 
Name:
Country:
City:
Email:
Comment:
 
    
    
Related Stories
Myanmar hopes for deal on Rohingya
NAYPYITAW: Myanmar’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi said on Tuesday she hopes talks with Bangladesh this week will result in a memorandum of understanding on the “safe ..
China draws 3-stage path for Myanmar
NAYPYITAW: China called for a ceasefire in Myanmar’s Rakhine State so that Rohingya Muslim refugees can return from Bangladesh, proposing a three-stage approach to the cr..
‘Myanmar troops gang-raped women’
WASHINGTON: Myanmar security forces slit the throats of Muslim Rohingya, burned victims alive, and gang-raped women and girls, according to two separate reports detailing..
US calls for credible probe of atrocities
NAYPYIDAW: Washington’s top diplomat on Wednesday said he would not yet push for sanctions against Myanmar over the Rohingya refugee crisis, but he called for a independe..
Army clears itself over Rohingya
YANGON: Human rights group Amnesty International poured scorn on a Myanmar military investigation into alleged atrocities against Rohingya Muslims, branding it a “whitewa..
FRONTPAGE
 
GALLERY
 
PANORAMA
 
TIME OUT
 
SPORT
 
 
Advertise | Copyright