Myanmar drops extra charges over drone journalists from Turkish state broadcaster

Myanmar authorities in October have detained two journalists from Singapore and Malaysia, who used a drone while on assignment for Turkish state broadcaster, TRT.

Expecting a fine, the documentary journalists were sentenced to two months in jail for violating Myanmar’s aircraft act, France 24 reported.

They faced an additional three years for violating the import-export law and five more for immigration offences, the report said.

Those later charges have now been dropped “as the defendants didn't compromise state security,” a defence lawyer was quoted by France 24 as saying.

The judge is now expected to dismiss the case, and journalists will be released by early January, the lawyer said.

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been a vocal critic of the Rohingya crisis, in which government-controlled forces led 655,000 people to flee across the border to Bangladesh since late August, France 24 said.

TRT has not confirmed the subject of the documentary, but said the Myanmar’s Ministry of Information were informed about the filming plans.

At least 11 reporters have been arrested in 2017 in Myanmar, France 24 said, where rights group criticise a backsliding by the country’s leader, Aung San Suu Kyi.


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