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Myanmar deports Australian journalist

Nay Pyi Taw - An Australian journalist has been deported from Myanmar after covering protests against the jailing of a colleague, raising concern about press freedom in the former pariah state, media reports and rights groups said Friday.

Myanmar immigration authorities said Angus Watson, 24, who worked for the Yangon bureau of the Democratic Voice of Burma, was deported Thursday for breaching the terms of his business visa, the Mizzima news service reported.

Watson’s deportation came the day after he covered a protest in Mayway, central Myanmar, demanding the release of DVB journalist Ko Zaw Pe, who was on Tuesday sentenced to one year in prison for trespassing and disturbing a civil servant’s efforts to investigate a local corruption scandal.

"Deporting journalists harkens back to Burma’s half-century of military rule and is one of many signs that democratic reforms have been illusory," said Bob Dietz, Asia director for the Committee to Protect Journalists.

DPA


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