Photographer Aye Kyaw reportedly dies in Myanmar military custody

Police patrol on a street in Yangon, Myanmar, on July 19, 2022. Photographer Aye Kyaw reportedly died in Myanmar military custody. (AFP)

Shawn Crispin, CPJ’s senior Southeast Asia representative, called on Myanmar authorities to immediately account for the whereabouts of photojournalist Aye Kyaw, a member of the Upper Myanmar Photography Association, amid reports that he died after being detained city of Sagaing by Myanmar’s military on July 30.

“If he died while in junta detention, then those responsible must be identified and brought to justice,” Crispin said.

Separately on July 30, Myanmar authorities arrested Japanese documentary filmmaker Toru Kubota while he filmed a small protest in the commercial capital of Yangon, and accused him of violating the country’s immigration laws and encouraging dissent against the military junta. He was moved to Yangon’s Insein Prison on August 4.

More on Myanmar

  • On July 29, a court in the city of Hpa-an, in Kayin state, sentenced Maung Myo, a reporter for the independent Mekong News Agency, to six years in prison on charges of violating Section 52(a) of the Counter-Terrorism Law in connection with his coverage of insurgent groups that are fighting Myanmar’s military government.
  • Earlier in July, a court in the northwestern region of Sagaing convicted and sentenced Democratic Voice of Burma journalist Aung San Lin to six years in prison with hard labor. And an Insein Township Court in Yangon sentenced Nying Nying Aye, a freelance reporter who contributes regularly to the local news website Mizzima, to three years in prison with hard labor. 
  • Myanmar was the world’s second worst jailer of journalists, trailing only China, with at least 26 behind bars when CPJ conducted its most recent prison census on December 1, 2021.

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An AFP journalist runs as smoke rises behind after a bombardment in Bakhmut, Eastern Ukraine, on July 31, 2022. (AFP/Bulent Kilic)

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Deaths in Ukraine

Motive confirmed (12)

Ihor Hudenko, Freelance, killed in Kharkiv on February 26
Yevhenii Sakun, LIVE, killed in Kyiv on March 1
Viktor Dedov, Sigma-TV, killed in Mariupol on March 11
Oksana Haidar, Freelance, killed in Shevchenkove around March 11 – April 7
Brent Renaud, Time, killed in Irpin on March 13
Maks Levin,, body found April 1 near Huta-Mezhyhirska, missing on March 13
Pierre Zakrzewski, Fox News, killed in Horenka on March 14
Oleksandra Kuvshynova, Fox News, killed in Horenka on March 14
Oksana Baulina, The Insider, killed in Kyiv on March 23
Mantas Kvedaravicius, Freelance, killed in Mariupol on April 2
Vira Hyrych, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, killed in Kyiv on April 28
Frédéric Leclerc-Imhoff, BFMTV, killed in Lysychansk on May 30

Motive unconfirmed (3)

Zoreslav Zamoysky, Freelance, killed in Bucha around March 4 – April 12
Roman Nezhyborets, Dytynets, killed in Yahidne around March 5-9
Yevhenii Bal, Freelance, killed in Manhush on April 2

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Journalist Ayub Ali Warty was recently detained and charged with defamation in Iraqi Kurdistan. (Photo: Ayub Ali Warty)

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2022 IPFA awardees (clockwise from left, with image credits): Niyaz Abdullah (Elyaas Ehsas); Abraham Jiménez Enoa (Núria López Torres); Pham Doan Trang (Paul Mooney); Sevgil Musaieva (Ukrainska Pravda)

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Journalists Attacked

Austin Tice



Austin Tice, a U.S. freelance photojournalist who contributed to The Washington Post, McClatchy, Al-Jazeera English, and other news outlets, was detained at a checkpoint outside Damascus in August 2012. A brief video made public a few weeks later showed Tice as a captive.  He has not been heard from since.

Tice’s parents, Marc and Debra, have waged a tireless effort to bring him home. August 2022 marks 10 years since his disappearance.

Dozens of journalists around the globe are missing. Their families and colleagues deserve answers.

journalists killed in 2022 (motive confirmed)
imprisoned in 2021
missing globally