Asia - Pacific

Japan seeks swift release of journalist in Myanmar

Junta forces detained Tokyo-based business daily The Nikkei journalist Yuki on Sunday, put him in Yangon's Insein prison

Riyaz ul Khaliq   | 20.04.2021
Japan seeks swift release of journalist in Myanmar


Japan on Tuesday sought "swift release" of a journalist who was detained and subsequently jailed in Myanmar during anti-coup demonstrations.

"Japan considers the way in which the situation has been handled, including the fact he was sent to prison before sentencing, unacceptable," Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato told a news conference in Tokyo.

Myanmar's junta forces detained Kitazumi Yuki, 45, on Sunday night and shifted him to the Insein prison in Yangon, according to Kyodo News.
His house was raided in Yangon on Sunday evening, from where his belongings were confiscated.

He reports for Tokyo-based business daily The Nikkei. The junta authorities grilled Yuki about his professional work on Monday.
"We have lodged a protest with the Myanmar side regarding this point, and we are calling for the Japanese national in question to be swiftly released," Kato said.

The journalist was active on social media, sharing articles and photos about the ongoing anti-coup demonstrations in the Buddhist-majority country.

He was also detained on Feb. 26 by the Myanmar military before being released the same day.

Some 738 people have been killed in security forces' crackdown on pro-democracy protesters since the Feb. 1 military takeover in Myanmar, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners, a local monitoring group.

More than 3,200 people are currently under detention in the country, the group said.

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