YANGON (Reuters) - A Myanmar judge’s verdict on Monday jailing two Reuters reporters for seven years over a breach of the country’s official secrets acts was “deeply troubling”, the U.S. ambassador to the southeast Asian nation said.
“I’m sad for Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo and their families, but also for Myanmar,” Scot Marciel said.
“It’s deeply troubling for everybody who has struggled so hard here for media freedom. I think one has to ask will this process increase or decrease the confidence the people of Myanmar have in their justice system.”
Britain’s envoy to Myanmar said he was “extremely disappointed” by the decision.
“Speaking on behalf of the British government, but also on behalf of European Union member states, we are extremely disappointed by this verdict,” said Britain’s Ambassador Dan Chugg.
“Freedom of expression and rule of law are fundamental in a democracy, and this case has passed a long shadow over both today.
“The judge has appeared to have ignored evidence and to have ignored Myanmar law. This has dealt a hammer blow for the rule of law.”
Reporting by Antoni Slodkowski; Writing by Clarence Fernandez; Editing by Philip McClellan