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Journalist freed after sentence reduced

YANGON, Myanmar – A journalist and his assistant who were imprisoned for filming inside a government office have been freed after an appeals court reduced their sentences from one year to three months.

Zaw Pe, a video reporter for the independent Democratic Voice of Burma media group, and Win Myint Hlaing were convicted in April of trespassing and obstructing a civil servant. They filmed inside an education department office while investigating the selection process for a Japanese scholarship program.

Their sentences were reduced because the appeals court found they had acted in their capacity as journalists. The nominally civilian government that replaced military rule has eased censorship, but reporters and publishers still face intimidation through lawsuits.

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