Sun 30 Sep 2007
Filed under: Inside Burma,News
Myanmar’s main Internet link remained shut for a third straight day Sunday, as the ruling regime tried to curb the flow of information on a bloody crackdown against protesters.
“I tried this morning again but it’s failed again. I haven’t been able to check my e-mail since Friday,” said one Yangon resident.
Internet cafÃ©s in Yangon also remained closed. Over the past week, tech-savvy citizens used the cybercafÃ©s to transmit pictures and video clips of the regime’s clampdown taken on mobile phones and digital cameras.
“People inside Myanmar can’t send e-mails or news to outside organizations,” said Kho Win Aung from activist group Shwe Gas Movement.
“So they are losing their chance to express what’s happening in Myanmar,” the Thailand-based activist told AFP in Bangkok.
The government cracked down on protesters last week, killing at least 13 people and injuring hundreds more, in a campaign that has also intensified pressure on media operating in the country.
In the main city of Yangon, soldiers shot dead a Japanese video-journalist Thursday and beat people found with mobile phones or cameras, witnesses said.
Myanmar’s military rulers always keep a tight grip on information, heavily censoring newspapers, blocking much of the Internet and rarely allowing foreign journalists into the country.
Paris-based media rights group Reporters Without Borders said that by cutting Internet access, the regime was trying to operate “behind closed doors.”
It has condemned Myanmar as a “paradise for censors” and listed the country as one of the world’s most restrictive for press freedoms.