Burma Officially Defends 2 Reuters Reporters

Two Reuters journalists imprisoned in Myanmar, on Wednesday (10/1), have been formally charged with violating the State Secrecy Act.

Prosecutors filed charges against Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo on Wednesday (10/1) a short trial in Yangon. The two journalists were arrested on December 12 after they allegedly received secret documents from two policemen at a dinner event.

The lawyers of both journalists said the judge rejected the request to release his two clients on bail but promised to take a decision at the next hearing , which is scheduled to take place on January 23.

The two journalists briefly met with their families after the trial, before being returned to prison.

Outside the court, dozens of black-clad journalists marched to show their support for Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo. Some of them carried banners reading "Journalism is not a crime."

The two men face the possibility of a maximum jail term of 14 years if proven to violate the State Secrecy Act. The law itself is centuries old or valid since Myanmar is still under British colonial rule. [ab/uh]

Follow US Steps, Israel Officially Quit Exit UNESCO

 The Israeli government has officially declared a withdrawal from the UN cultural and educational body, UNESCO. This assurance was delivered about two months after Israel announced its decision to follow the steps of the United States (US) first out of UNESCO.

As reported by AFP Saturday (30/12/2017), Director General Director General of UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay, said he was officially notified by Israel on Friday (29/12) local time. In the announcement, Israel declared the official exit from UNESCO on December 31, 2018.

Azoulay deplores Israel's decision out of UNESCO which is the Organization of Culture, Scientific and Educational UN.

"I deeply regret this, because in my opinion, only in UNECSO and not beyond, countries can overcome differences in the areas of competence of this organization," he said. [19659004] The United States announced its decision to exit UNESCO on October 12 after accusing the UN agency of anti-Israeli tendencies. At that time, the US assessed the various resolutions issued by UNESCO more favorable to Palestine.

One of them is about the dispute over the cultural heritage places in Jerusalem and the Palestinian territories. The United States and Israel disagreed with UNESCO's decision to establish Hebron and two temples in the heart of the region – the tomb of the Jewish Patriarchs ( Jewish Tomb of the Patriarch ) and the Ibrahim Mosque – as a world heritage site in danger ' Palestinian World Heritage Site in Danger '.

Not only that, last year, UNESCO released a resolution backed by Arab countries that criticized Israeli policies in religious places in East Jerusalem and the Edges West.

Long before that, tensions between Israel and the United States with UNESCO began to emerge since the UN agency controversially recognized Palestine as a 'member state' in 2011. The move was openly opposed by Israel and the United States which affirmed that any recognition of Palestine should await the Middle East peace accord.

The 195 member UNESCO is known to produce a list of ' World Heritage Sites ' the tourists. Israel, which has joined UNESCO since 1949, has 9 places on the list, including the ancient Masad fortress near the Dead Sea.

UNESCO also manages many other scientific, educational and cultural programs including programs to educate people about the Holocaust and promoting intercultural dialogue.

The relationship between Israel and the United States is warming up under the administration of US President Donald Trump. On December 6, Trump announced the official US recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. The confession was extensively praised by Israel.

(nvc / tor)