Reuters claims journalists arrested in Myanmar were probing Rohingya mass killing

Myanmar holds two journalists after investigating Rohingya deaths

This image, a handout from Reuters, is included in the report

Friday, February 9, 2018

Two Reuters journalists being held by authorities in Myanmar were probing the killing of 10 Rohingya Muslims, according to the news agency.

Kyaw Soe Oo and Wa Lone, who are both from the country, were arrested in mid-December and are still being held in detention, having been denied bail.

In an attempt to demonstrate the pair were acting in the public interest, Reuters has published a detailed report which purportedly sheds light on the work they were doing prior to their arrest.

The report begins "On Sept. 2, Buddhist villagers and Myanmar troops killed 10 Rohingya men in Myanmar's restive Rakhine state. Reuters uncovered the massacre and has pieced together how it unfolded.

"During the reporting of this article, two Reuters journalists were arrested by Myanmar police."

The report alleges that the 10 Rohingya people were either shot or hacked to death, having watched their Buddhist oppressors dig a mass grave. The victims were fishermen, shopkeers, an Islamic teacher and a pair of teenage students.

The report is accompanied by several photos, including an image which appears to show dead bodies in a mass grave.

Myanmar has not commented on the latest Reuters report. However the country said on Thursday, prior to its publication, that “We are not denying the allegations about violations of human rights. And we are not giving blanket denials.” 

Myanmar has also admitted killing 10 Rohingya people, but claimed they were terrorists. Reuters denies this claim, saying the victims did not conduct any attack prior to their death.

The latest report has sparked calls for an independent probe, while human rights groups are calling for the release of the journalists. The pair are expected to appear at another hearing on Wednesday (February 14).



They could both be handed prison sentences of up to 14 years for having classified documents and breaking the Official Secrets Act.