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State-run newspapers published an Information Ministry announcement Tuesday telling the Irrawaddy Publishing Group that it must change the names of its two publications named after the Irrawaddy River to use the government-approved spelling "Ayeyarwady," according to an Associated Press report December 16.

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A plan is underway to admit reporters from independent media to the Presidential Palace and public events involving the president and other cabinet members, Minister of Information U Ye Htut told media representatives at a meeting in Yangon on December 16.

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The Southeast Asian Press Alliance highlighted the death of a Myanmar journalist and remembered the fifth anniversary of the massacre of media workers in the Philippines as it wound up its annual campaign to end impunity for violence against journalists.

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A group of Myanmar reporters and editors received four days of training on religious freedom and conflict reporting last week in Yangon.

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US President Barack Obama held talks with several civic organizations at the US embassy in Yangon on 14 November, focusing on issues such as human rights and press freedom, participants told Mizzima.

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The International Press Institute has called on Myanmar to thoroughly investigate the recent death of a journalist at the hands of the military and to release five staffers from a weekly newspaper sentenced to seven years behind bars, according to press release from the NGO November 13.