YANGON (Reuters) – A court in Myanmar declined to grant bail on Thursday for two Reuters journalists accused of violating the country’s Official Secrets Act, although their defense lawyer said information in documents at the center of the case was publicly available.
Lawyer Than Zaw Aung said a police witness had accepted during court proceedings that details in documents found in the possession of the reporters when they were arrested had already been published in newspaper reports.
Wa Lone, 31, and Kyaw Soe Oo, 27, had worked on Reuters coverage of a crisis in Rakhine state, where an army crackdown on insurgents that started on Aug. 25 has triggered the flight of nearly 690,000 Rohingya Muslims to neighboring Bangladesh, according to the United Nations.
The reporters were detained on Dec. 12 after they had been invited to meet police officers over dinner in Yangon. They have told relatives they were …