Burma’s new Information Minister Aung Kyi met with representatives from Myanmar [Burma] Journalists’ Association and from Myanmar Journalists Network separately this weekend to discuss on-going lawsuits involving the media and the formation of the country’s interim Press Council.
MJA deputy chairman Ko Ko said he met with the minister on Saturday at the state-run Myanmar Radio and Television building in Rangoon.
“We discussed the formation of a Press Council, the Media Law draft and also publications facing lawsuits – I asked him to help mediate and he promised to do as much as he can,” said Ko Ko. “He said cases like this wouldn’t have happened if a Press Council was in place.
“I think the meeting was very positive – the minister looks like he’s willing to help the media.”
Earlier in the day, the minister met with officials from the Myanmar Journalist Network including general secretary Myint Kyaw and executive member Tin Zar Zaw to discuss policies and talked about candidates who could serve on the Press Council.
“The policy is only a draft at the moment, some of the policies might be scrapped after more discussion in the future – so far we’ve noted after having a read-through that we agreed with it,” said Myint Kyaw.
He said the minister also mentioned the new Media Law during their discussion.
According to Myint Kyaw, the minister said a workshop would be held to discuss potential amendments that could be made to the draft before it’s sent to the president.
Aung Ky replaced former information minister and prominent hardliner Kyaw Hsan last month in the cabinet reshuffle initiated by President Thein Sein, which analysts said was conducted to further promote his reform agenda.