Naung Yoe

Beats Covered:
Local or Foreign:

Freelance reporter Naung Yoe, who has contributed to Kachin News Group, was arrested on April 9, 2021, while covering a protest against the military’s February 1 democracy-suspending coup in Hpakant town, Kachin State, according to news reports, a database maintained by the Assistance Association of Political Prisoners, and Kachin News Group editor Sam Naw, who communicated with CPJ via messaging app. 

Naung Yoe is being held at Hpakant Police Station under Article 505(a) of the penal code, according to the same sources. The broad provision criminalizes “any attempt to cause fear, spread false news or agitate directly or indirectly a criminal offense against a government employee” or that “causes their hatred, disobedience, or disloyalty toward the military and the government,” according to the reports and association. Convictions under the provision allow for a maximum three-year prison sentence. 

The military junta cracked down on Myanmar’s independent media, detaining dozens of journalists, according to those sources and CPJ research.

Naung Yoe’s trial was delayed due to COVID-19 and was still pending as of October 1, according to Sam Naw, who said the reporter has been allowed prison visits. 

The Ministry of Information did not reply to CPJ’s emailed request sent in late November 2021 for comment on his legal status and treatment in detention.