Myanmar releases Reuters reporters Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo from prison after 511 days

Reporters imprisoned by Myanmar since 2017 for exposing Rohingya Muslim crackdown

Reuters reporters U Wa Lone, third from left, and U Kyaw Soe Oo, to his right, walk free from prison in Yangon, Myanmar, on Tuesday. IMAGE courtesy Reuters.

Reuters reports tonight, and the New York Times and WaPo confirm, that Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, jailed since December 2017 for their journalism that exposed a massacre of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar, have been set free by the authorities in Myanmar (Burma).

"After spending more than 500 days in prison for reporting on the ethnic cleansing of the rohingya, wa lone and kyaw soe oo are free. I just watched them walk out of the prison myself," wrote Gerry Doyle on Twitter.

And then came the photos that showed Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo walking out of from Insein Prison in Myanmar, to their freedom.

From the New York Times report tonight:

The two reporters, U Wa Lone, 33, and U Kyaw Soe Oo, 29, were arrested in December 2017 and sentenced in September to seven years in prison under the colonial-era Official Secrets Act for receiving documents from a police officer.

The men, along with their Reuters colleagues, were awarded in April the Pulitzer Prize for international reporting, one of journalism's most coveted and prestigious honors.

Their case had become an international cause célèbre, with journalists, human rights activists and world leaders calling for their release. Their arrest, like the ethnic conflict they were covering, was a turning point in the West's perception of Myanmar's de facto prime minister, Aung San Suu Kyi, who had long been seen as a force for democracy and tolerance.