>> A Myanmar judge rejected a request for dismissal of a case against two jail Reuters reporters on Wednesday. The two journalists were jailed in the country after being accused of possessing secret government papers. A court in Nyagan has been holding preliminary hearing since January, to decide whether Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo will be charged.
Those charges are under Myanmar's colonial era official secrets act and carry a maximum penalty of 14 years in prison. The judge said there was a proper reason for the accusations against the reporters and because of that, they should not be released. Defense in prosecution lawyers made legal arguments in front of the judge a week ago, after the defense had filed the motion to have the case thrown out two weeks ago.
In a statement on Wednesday, Reuters President and Editor-in-Chief, Stephen Adler said quote, we are deeply disappointed with the court's decision. We believe that there are solid grounds for the court to dismiss this matter and to release our journalists. The pair had been working on a Reuters investigation into the killing of ten Rohingya Muslim men in the village of Inn Din during an army crackdown that had sent nearly 700,000 people fleeing to Bangladesh.
The army said Tuesday, seven Myanmar soldiers have been sentenced to hard labor for participating in the massacre. Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo have been in custody since their arrests on December 12th.