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American journalist with Acadiana ties detained in Myanmar

danny fenster.jpg
Posted at 11:42 AM, May 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-29 12:42:24-04

An American journalist with Louisiana ties who was working for a news magazine in Myanmar was detained Monday by the authorities there, his employers said.

Danny Fenster, managing editor for Frontier Myanmar, was detained at Yangon International Airport as he was preparing to board a flight to
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, en route to the Detroit area to see his family, the Associated Press reports.

A 37-year-old Detroit native, Fenster wrote for The Daily Iberian and briefly for The Current before moving to Southeast Asia. He joined Frontier Myanmar in August 2020.

Friday, Bryan Fenster, Danny's brother, said he had been taken to a prison in Yangon, which has housed thousands of political prisoners over decades.

"We've been hearing terrible things about the conditions there," said Bryan Fenster. "We want him out of there."

His mother, Rose Fenster, described how she felt when she learned her son was being detained as "a total visceral reaction, gut, visceral, numbing, nauseating, tearful, helpless feeling."

Friday, the U.S. State Department said it was deeply concerned about the detention of Fenster and another American citizen who was working as a journalist in Myanmar. The State Department is pressing Myanmar's military government for their immediate release.

Two other foreign journalists have been arrested by the military junta that took power in Myanmar in February, and have since been deported.

"He has a fascination and passion for writing about folks who struggle and fight for social justice," Bryan Fenster told The Associated Press. "We hope he's safe."

According to The Daily Iberian, Fenster won first place in the Louisiana Press Association's Best News Story category during his time at the paper for a story on families of murder victims still looking for closure years after losing their loved ones to violence.

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