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YANGON (AFP) – Myanmar deported an Australian journalist working for the news website Democratic Voice of Burma on May 8 after he covered a demonstration calling for the release of a jailed DVB reporter, as concerns grow about media rights in the former junta-run nation.

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The Myanmar government has been accused of persecuting journalists by a Paris-based human rights organisation that has also called for the release of five detained journalists.

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A member of the Interim Press Council has responded sharply to a comment by Deputy Information Minister U Ye Htut about the freedom of the press in Myanmar.

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Recent arrests of journalists in Myanmar have raised doubts about the government’s commitment to freedom of the press, says a senior US State Department official.

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The Myanmar Journalist Network has asked newspapers and journals to participate in a “black page” protest on April 11 in response to the jailing of a journalist, MJN general secretary U Myint Kyaw told Mizzima on April 8.

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The Myanmar Journalists Network has decided to submit to the Ministry of Information a list of proposed amendments to the Printers and Publishing Law enacted last month.