Japan seeks release of journalist arrested in Myanmar for second time

WION Web Team
New DelhiUpdated: Apr 19, 2021, 07:14 PM IST


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Media reports identified the journalist as Yuki Kitazumi, who runs a media production company, Yangon Media Professionals

A Japanese journalist covering the coup in Myanmar has been arrested for the second time, leading Tokyo to call for his immediate release on Monday.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato told reporters in Tokyo that Japan is asking Myanmar authorities to explain the arrest and provide other details while asking for his release as soon as possible.

Kato did not give the joruinalist's identity, but media reports identified him as Yuki Kitazumi, who runs a media production company, Yangon Media Professionals. He was arrested previously in February while covering protests against the February 1 coup but was released soon after.

Myanmar authorities again detained him on Sunday after picking him up from his home in Yangon, the reports said.

Kitazumi, a former Nikkei business newspaper reporter, is currently based in Yangon as a freelance journalist.
"We will continue asking the Myanmar side for his early release, while doing our utmost for the protection of the Japanese citizens in that country," Kato said.
Japan's NHK public television quoted witnesses as saying that they saw Kitazumi being arrested and taken from his home.
Japan has stepped up its criticism of Myanmar's deadly crackdown on opposition but has taken a milder approach than the US and some other countries that imposed sanctions against members of the military junta.

(with inputs from agencies)