days that two Reuters journalists
have been imprisoned
A TIMELINE OF THE EVENTS
JULY 17, 2018
Wa Lone told the court that police questioning centered on reporting of a massacre of Rohingya Muslims, not on secret state documents the reporters are accused of obtaining.
JULY 16, 2018
At the start of the trial, Wa Lone told the court a policeman had insisted on a meeting where he abruptly handed over papers minutes before the reporters were arrested.
JULY 9, 2018
The court charges Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo with breaching the Official Secrets Act. Both reporters plead not guilty.
JULY 2, 2018
Prosecutors and defense lawyers delivered final arguments in the pre-trial phase of the case.
JUNE 18, 2018
Prosecutors presented their last witness in the pre-trial hearings. Defense lawyers said the police witness had violated police code by obtaining testimony from previous witnesses.
JUNE 11, 2018
The reporters were subjected to sleep deprivation and asked if they were “spies” during police interrogations, their lawyers suggested during questions in court.
JUNE 6, 2018
Documents police say they found on the reporters’ mobile phones were not confidential because the information in them was publicly available, the reporters’ lawyers said.
MAY 29, 2018
Lawyers for the reporters say evidence from their phones may be ‘tainted’ because at least one phone was used after it was confiscated.
MAY 28, 2018
Police witness says the reporters’ mobile phones were searched without a warrant.
MAY 16, 2018
Police Lance Corporal Naing Lin told the court he met the reporters, but did not give them secret documents.
MAY 9, 2018
Moe Yan Naing gives more details to the court about how he said the reporters were framed by police.
MAY 2, 2018
Judge Ye Lwin rejects a request from prosecutors to have Police Captain Moe Yan Naing declared an unreliable witness.
APRIL 29, 2018
The police officer who testified that Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo had been framed has been sentenced to an undisclosed prison term for violating Myanmar’s Police Disciplinary Act, a police spokesman said.
APRIL 26, 2018
More than 160 Myanmar civil society groups sign an open letter to President Win Myint, urging him to release Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo as well as police officers involved in what they said was “obviously an unreasonable case”.
APRIL 25, 2018
Prosecutors argued in court that Police Captain Moe Yan Naing should be declared an unreliable witness. The defense said prosecutors had not shown that he was unreliable. The judge said he would rule on the matter on May 2.
APRIL 20, 2018
Prosecution witness Police Captain Moe Yan Naing told a court that a police chief had given orders to entrap the journalists by giving them “secret documents” and then arresting them.
APRIL 17, 2018
Myanmar’s president says over 8,000 prisoners will be freed in a new year amnesty, but the Reuters reporters were not included and the government cited the ongoing legal proceedings.
APRIL 13, 2018
Britain’s foreign minister and United Nations human rights rapporteurs call for the release of the reporters
APRIL 11, 2018
Judge Ye Lwin rejects the request from the defence for dismissal of the case.
APRIL 4, 2018
Defence and prosecution lawyers make legal arguments in front of Judge Ye Lwin, a week after the defence filed a motion to have the case thrown out.
MARCH 29, 2018
Prominent human rights lawyer Amal Clooney joins the legal team representing two Reuters reporters jailed in Myanmar. “Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo are being prosecuted simply because they reported the news,” Clooney said in a statement.
MARCH 28, 2018
Lawyers for Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo ask the court to throw out the case, saying there was insufficient evidence to support charges against the pair. The court will hear arguments from prosecutors and defense lawyers on April 4.
MARCH 21, 2018
Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo appear in a Myanmar court for the 11th time, marking 100 days since they were arrested late last year. “They have been detained in Myanmar since December 12 simply for doing their jobs as journalists,” Reuters President and Editor-in-Chief Stephen J. Adler said.
MARCH 14, 2018
Some international observers urge Myanmar not to drag out the legal proceedings against the two Reuters journalists, as they appeared in court for the 10th time. The Danish embassy in Yangon said the journalists should be “thanked and not punished” for their reporting on northern Rakhine state.
MARCH 7, 2018
A police major tells the court police searched Wa Lone’s home the night after the two Reuters journalists were arrested. Police were looking for material “related to news,” he said. Before the hearing, a doctor examined and took blood samples from the pair after their lawyer raised concerns that their health had deteriorated in prison.
FEB 28, 2018
A witness in the case tells the court that he wrote notes on his hand about where the two journalists were arrested to jog his memory while giving testimony. At issue is whether they were arrested immediately after a pre-arranged meeting with police, or at a routine traffic stop.
FEB 21, 2018
The first civilian to testify in the case gives evidence in court which a defense lawyer says contradicts police and prosecutors about where the pair were arrested.
FEB 14, 2018
One of the policemen who detained the reporters tells the court that he was not familiar with police procedures for recording arrests.
FEB 13, 2018
A senior U.N. official tells the Security Council that the Reuters investigation demands “attention and action.”
FEB 13, 2018
The United States urges the U.N. to hold Myanmar’s military accountable for ‘ethnic cleansing’ and reiterates demands for the reporters’ release.
FEB 11, 2018
Myanmar says action will be taken against members of its security forces in connection with the killings, but says it is not related to the Reuters report.
FEB 10, 2018
Britain’s foreign minister Boris Johnson says he will raise the case of two Reuters journalists detained in Myanmar with Aung San Suu Kyi.
FEB 9, 2018
The Reuters report prompts calls from the U.S. State Department for an independent probe into the bloodshed.
FEB 8, 2018
Reuters publishes the investigation that the reporters had been working on. It describes how security forces and local Rakhine Buddhists were involved in the killing of 10 Rohingya Muslim men buried in a mass grave in Rakhine state.
FEB 6, 2018
Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo return to court, where a police officer who arrested the journalists says he burned his notes from the time of the arrest.
FEB 1, 2018
The court denies the reporters bail and sends them back to Insein prison, although a police witness says under cross-examination that information in the documents they were holding had already been published in newspaper reports.
JAN 24, 2018
Veteran U.S. diplomat Bill Richardson resigns from a Rohingya crisis panel, calling it a ‘whitewash.’ He had earlier said he would work toward securing the reporters’ release.
JAN 23, 2018
At a court hearing, Myanmar police say they sought the Official Secrets Act probe of the reporters an hour after their arrest.
JAN 10, 2018
Myanmar’s military says its soldiers murdered 10 captured Muslims during insurgent attacks at the beginning of September, after Buddhist villagers had forced the captured men into a grave they had dug.
JAN 10, 2018
The journalists appear in court, where prosecutors seek charges against them under the Official Secrets Act.
JAN 8, 2018
Former U.S. President Bill Clinton joins calls for the release of the journalists.
JAN 8, 2018
A group of Myanmar journalists ask the government for details about the arrests, arguing the case could have implications for journalists doing their jobs.
DEC 28, 2017
The reporters’ families say the pair told them they were arrested almost immediately after being handed documents by the policemen they met for the first time the night of the arrest.
DEC 27, 2017
Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo appear in court after being held at an undisclosed location without contact with families or lawyers for two weeks. They are remanded to custody for another two weeks.
DEC 21, 2017
A Myanmar police spokesman says the two journalists have been remanded to custody after appearing in court.
DEC 20, 2017
The U.N. rejects a report published in Myanmar’s media which suggested that the Reuters reporters had given it information.
DEC 17, 2017
Army-appointed vice president Myint Swe, acting on behalf of Myanmar’s civilian President Htin Kyaw, authorizes the police to proceed with a case against the reporters.
DEC 15, 2017
The U.S. demands the immediate release of the reporters, “or information as to the circumstances around their disappearance.”
DEC 14, 2017
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres calls for the journalists’ release.
DEC 13, 2017
Myanmar’s government says that the journalists face charges under the colonial-era Official Secrets Act, which carries a maximum prison sentence of 14 years.
DEC 12, 2017
Two Reuters journalists, Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, are arrested in Myanmar’s main city, Yangon, after being invited to meet police officials over dinner.