This statement was originally published on mizzima.com on 2 June 2021.
Mizzima categorically opposes the two-year prison sentence handed to Mizzima’s Myeik-based freelance reporter Ko Zaw Zaw and calls for the immediate release of all journalists unjustly detained by the ruling junta, including Ko Zaw Zaw and another four detained Mizzima journalists.
Mizzima firmly believes that journalism and the right to freedom of expression is not a crime and that Mizzima and all independent Myanmar media outlets should be allowed to freely function in Myanmar.
Ko Zaw Zaw was sentenced under section 505(a) of the penal code, which makes it a crime to publish or circulate any alleged misinformation with intent to cause alarm among the public or incite the public to commit a crime against the government.
We appeal to the international community to support Mizzima and its journalists and staff both inside and outside Myanmar, as we continue to uphold our responsibilities to the people of Myanmar while confronted with daily oppression and risk to personal well-being and safety.
Ko Zaw Zaw was detained some two months ago at his home by the military while covering ongoing events for Mizzima in Myeik and Dawei in southern Myanmar.
Mizzima, founded in 1998 and one of the top independent media houses in Myanmar, had its media licenses stripped by the military junta following the February coup.
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Source: MEDIA FEED