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A crime reporter was brutally beaten while working in Rangoon on Sunday night. He remains in the neurology ward at Rangoon General Hospital, as police from Kyauktada Township investigate the assault.
Bo Myint, a reporter for Myanmar Newsweek, has previously covered sensitive topics like the plight of prostitutes in the city. He says he was assaulted by a man who believed him to be a whistle-blower.
“The guy asked me ‘Are you an informer?’” Bo Myint told DVB from his hospital bed.
“‘I know you are an informer’ the man shouted. He smashed a bottle in his hand but then he threw it away. I turned and went the other way.”
“I then arrived at Kyaw Gyi’s shop, because I wanted to interview him about the Dhammazedi Bell recovery attempt. But he wasn’t there so I left. Then I was attacked on Bo Aung Kyaw Rd.”
Bo Myint said he managed to get up and run to a friend’s bar nearby, where he lost consciousness.
“I wasn’t investigating anything sinister, but I have reported on prostitution in the area before, for my crime column. That probably angered someone.”
The assault was first reported to local media by prominent labour activist Su Su Nway. She said she was appalled by the incident and called for greater protection for journalists.