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In the 20-month period since Suu Kyi took office, Myanmar has arrested at least 29 reporters. They said they had "illegally obtained information with the intent of sharing it with overseas media". The Myanmar government has said that the case has nothing to do with free speech in the newspapers. Since the beginning of the transitional period of the 2011 junta and the lifting of the pre-release mark in 2012, a lively local newspaper has emerged.
Yet Myanmar was voted 131th out of 180 nation states for free journalism by Reporters Without Borders this year - in the lower third, but ahead of seven states in the region: "Public agencies are continuing to put pressures on the mass media and even intervening directly to change editing policy," said Reporters Without Borders in a year' s Newspaper.
Last weeks Kyaw Zwa Moe, publisher of the English version of Irrawaddy, said in a comment that Myanmar has free speech, "but with an unseen line". Though de facto Myanmar's chief, Suu Kyi is compelled to divide government with the army, which heads safety departments and the policemen. The repression of the mass media has become harder, right-wing groups say, since October 2016, when Rohingya Muslim fighters assaulted the Rakhine state guard and triggered a strike that right-wing groups say was murder, torture and torture.
A number of Indonesian media reports that they cannot cover Rakhine State because they are harassed and threatened by the government and the locals, while international correspondents are refused entry to the area. Human Rights Watch Asia Assistant Principal Phil Robertson in New York said Suu Kyi had "shown little sympathy for the part of an impartial media in a democracy".
"Rakhine state's ethnical cleansings have made the administration even more intolerant," he said. Burma has rejected most accusations against its Rakhine military and rejected accusations by the United Nations, the United States and others that a drive for "ethnic cleansing" against the Rohingya has been launched. In Rakhine, the police have charged the world' s leading journalists with spreading "fake news" about violations of the law and working "hand in hand" with rebels.
Last October spokesperson Zaw Htay criticised the English-language daily Myanmar Times, investigative journalist Fiona MacGregor, on his Facebook page. Observers of the law say that the escalation of freedom of the media has not been confined to the Rakhine crises. It is criticised for being used to contain criticisms of the public administration and reports of it.