Jailed Reporter in Myanmar Challenges Prosecution’s Version of His Arrest
HONG KONG — A Reuters reporter jailed for months by Myanmar’s government has challenged the prosecution’s account of how he and a colleague were arrested, the latest twist in a closely watched trial that highlights the government’s tense relationship with the news media.
The testimony on Monday by the journalist, U Wa Lone, came more than half a year after he and a Reuters colleague were arrested in Yangon, Myanmar’s major city, while investigating violence against the persecuted Rohingya ethnic minority, Reuters reported. It was the first time the defense had a chance to present its case to the court.
The prosecution has said the two reporters were detained during a routine traffic stop, Reuters reported. But Mr. Wa Lone told a Yangon court on Monday that the arrest occurred after he and his colleague, U Kyaw Soe Oo, met two police officers in a Yangon restaurant.
Mr. Wa Lone said that one of the officers, Naing Lin, had arranged a meeting for the same day, insisting that it was urgent because he was about to be reassigned to another region.