Former Daily Iberian journalist appears in court in Myanmar

danny fenster.jpg
Posted at 8:50 PM, Jun 19, 2021

Former Daily Iberian journalist Danny Fenster appeared in court on Thursday in Yangon, Myanmar.

The 37-year-old was detained on May 24 shortly before he could board a flight to Kuala Lumpar, en route to see his family in Detroit.

Fenster has been charged under section 505a of Myanmar's penal code, which makes it a crime to publish or circulate comments that "cause fear," spread "false news," or incite government employees, according to CNN. The charge carries a potential three-year prison term.

Fenster is the managing editor of Frontier Myanmar, which posted a statement on its website Thursday condemning his detention and demanding his "immediate and unconditional release." After the hearing, the magazine says Fenster was remanded to Insein Prison for two weeks and scheduled to appear again in court on July 1. The prison has housed thousands of political prisoners over decades.

"We are shocked and frustrated that he has been detained for no apparent reason, and are concerned for his wellbeing. We are doing what we can to support him, as well as his family and friends, until he is freed," the statement reads.

Fenster's brother Bryan said the hearing took place without official communication with the US embassy or his family, CNN reports.

"To be clear this is a blatant disregard for the International Laws of the Vienna Convention and an egregious violation of human rights. They need to release Danny IMMEDIATELY."

American journalist Nathan Maung, who co-founded Kamayut Media in Yangon, Myanmar, was released from prison on June 14 and flew back to the U.S. on Tuesday after being held for three months.

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