A court inside Obo Prison sentenced Win Naing Oo, the former chief correspondent at Channel Mandalay, to five years in prison under Section 52 (A) of Myanmar’s Counter-Terrorism Law.
Under the law, “whoever is convicted of committing [acts of terrorism] shall be sentenced to a minimum of three-year imprisonment to a maximum of seven-year imprisonment”.
The journalist was sentenced along with three others, Min Thwe, Kyaw Oo and Zaw Min Oo, who were also charged with terrorism.
According to Myanmar Now, the junta has not released any other information regarding Win Naing Oo’s case, including his connection with the other accused.
Authorities first arrested Win Naing Oo and his wife, Thu Thu, on August 31, 2021 at a mango farm in Sintgaing, Mandalay. He was charged with incitement under Section 505 (A) of Myanmar’s Penal Code on September 15, 2021.
This is not the first time Win Naing Oo has been targeted by the military junta. In 2019 the journalist was charged with defamation under Section 66 (D) of Myanmar’s Telecommunications Law for a story on the military’s confiscation of land near Pyin Oo Lwin.
The IFJ said: “The sentencing of Win Naing Oo is unjustifiable and yet another example of the junta’s persecution of journalists in Myanmar. The IFJ urges Myanmar’s military authorities to immediately drop all charges against the journalist and calls for a repeal of the draconian Counter-Terrorism Law, which has been used to justify the arbitrary arrests of journalists in Myanmar.”