Conflicts & War

Former BBC presenter sentenced to 3 years with hard labor in Myanmar

Bangkok, Sep 16 (EFE).- A former BBC presenter has been sentenced to three years in prison with hard labor for incitement and illegal association in military-ruled Myanmar.

Htet Htet Khine, the presenter for BBC’s Media Action program between 2016 and 2020, was arrested in August 2021, six months after the military toppled the democratically-elected government.

A court in Yangon sentenced her on Thursday for allegedly inciting rebellion and spreading fake news, the BBC Burmese service said.

The article was one of the first laws enacted by the junta to persecute politicians, activists, and journalists.

BBC Media Action, the network’s NGO dedicated to the development, expressed concern for the “safety and well-being” of the journalist.

She had been the face of the “Khan Sar Kyi” (Feel it) program between 2016 and 2020, covering stories of the communities affected by the Myanmar conflict in Burma.

The official Global New Light of Myanmar newspaper reported her arrest along with Sithu Aung Myint, a columnist for the digital media Frontier Myanmar on Aug.15, 2021.

She is accused of hosting Aung Myint at her home when he was wanted.

The military authorities alleged that she was a volunteer editor of the FM Daily newspaper, launched by the so-called National Unity Government (NUG), made up of former parliamentarians and civil leaders close to deposed leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

According to Reporters Without Borders, at least 115 journalists have been detained in Myanmar since the Feb.1, 2021, coup.

Fifty-seven remain in prison. Seven have been tortured and three have died at the hands of soldiers.

Among detained foreign journalists are Danny Fenster, Nathan Maung (Americans), and Japanese Yuki Kitazumi. They have been deported.

Japanese filmmaker Toru Kubota is still under arrest.

According to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, 2,276 people have died in the military crackdown since the coup.

More than 15,500 people have been arbitrarily arrested and 12,400 remain in jail. EFE


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