Myanmar papers lift slogans attacking foreign media

By REUTERS
August 17, 2011 11:38

 
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YANGON - Myanmar's state-run newspapers dropped back-page banners attacking Western media for the first time in four years on Wednesday, the latest indication its new government could be softening its stance towards opposition voices.

Three official newspapers dropped half-page slogans that were running daily, accusing the Voice of America (VOA) and the British Broadcasting Corp (BBC) of "sowing hatred among the people," and other Western media of "generating public outrage."

The slogans also told readers not to be swayed by "killer broadcasts designed to cause troubles." They had been a fixture in state newspapers since a bloody army crackdown on monk-led protests in August 2007.

Myanmar's government has long struggled to control overseas' news. Removing the slogans is seen as the latest gesture of openness since elections last year ended five decades of army rule and ushered in a civilian-led administration.

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