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Twenty young journalists — 11 Burmese, 9 American — help Burma tell its own story.

GroundTruth journalism fellowship kicks off in Myanmar

Co-hosted with the New York City-based Open Hands Initiative, "Burma Telling Its Own Story" brings together 20 top, young journalists from the US and Burma.
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The Savoy Hotel in Yangon, Myanmar, the site of the "Burma Telling Its Own Story" journalism fellowship in June 2013. (Soe Than Win/GlobalPost)

YANGON, Myanmar — In the shadows of the ancient Buddhist shrine at the Shwedagon Pagoda, they emerged out of the sweeping monsoon rains into the faded, colonial elegance of the Savoy Hotel.

Lugging hard cases loaded down with cameras and audio gear, shouldering backpacks stuffed with laptops, notebooks and umbrellas protruding at awkward angles, they did not look much different from so many other generations of journalists drawn to this place over the decades to document Myanmar’s dramatic and still unfolding history.


After 65 years of ethnic violence, calls for federalism in Burma grow louder

Longstanding conflicts between ethnic minority groups and the government are moving in a peaceful direction, but the process is slow, messy and politically dangerous.
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A Kachin tribe woman listens to a speech by pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi during her visit to the town of Moe Kaung on February 23, 2012. The Kachin rebels were scheduled to hold peace talks with the Burmese government on March 8, 2012. (SOE THAN WIN/AFP/Getty Images)

YANGON, Myanmar — Ja Nan Lahtaw, assistant director of the Nyein Foundation, an NGO actively involved in peace-building processes with ethnic groups in Myanmar said Wednesday she had “cautious optimism” about the prospects of the country’s ongoing peace talks.

“I think the president and his negotiation team really want to bring about peace…they have good intentions,” Ja Nan Lahtaw told a group of journalists, referring to President Thein Sein. “But the process is the problem.”


Frontline Club launches network, safety initiative for freelance journalists

The London-based organization offers support to the growing ranks of freelancers, particularly those working in dangerous places.
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Swedish reporters Martin Schibbye (L) and Johan Persson pose on arrival at Arlanda airport in Stockholm on September 14, 2012. Ethiopia pardoned and freed Schibbye and Persson after they were jailed for 'supporting terrorism' for illegally crossing into Ethiopia from Somalia with rebels. (Anders Wiklund/AFP/Getty Images)

BOSTON — We live in perilous times for telling the truth.

Every day, journalists around the world are being detained, threatened, tortured and killed for the work they do. As readers of this blog know full well, last year was the worst year on record for journalists being killed on the job, since the International Press Institute and Committee to Protect Journalists starting keeping track in 1997. This year is not much better.


Sectarian violence sweeps through central Myanmar

Clashes between Buddhists and Muslims left more than 50 dead and thousands homeless.
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Policemen stand guard outside a partially-burnt mosque in riot-hit Meiktila, central Myanmar on March 22, 2013. Charred bodies lay unclaimed on the streets of a riot-hit town in central Myanmar, witnesses said, as global pressure mounted for an end to the Buddhist-Muslim unrest. Parts of Meiktila have been reduced to ashes in the most serious communal violence to hit the former junta-ruled nation since last year, leaving the authorities struggling to bring the situation under control (Soe Than Win/AFP/Getty Images)

YANGON, Myanmar – The latest round of sectarian violence in Myanmar seemed to be quieting over the weekend after the government declared a state of emergency and sent army troops to the area, leaving thousands homeless and more than 50 people confirmed dead.


Burma Telling Its Own Story: A reporting fellowship for young journalists

Open Hands Initiative, The GroundTruth Project and GlobalPost "Special Reports" announce a reporting fellowship for 20 top, young journalists.
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A Myanmar man reads a local journal in Yangon on August 20, 2012. Myanmar said it had abolished media censorship on August 20 in the latest in a series of rapid democratic reforms, delighting journalists who lived for decades under the shadow of the censors' marker pen. (Soe Than Win/AFP/Getty Images)

As Myanmar implements democratic reforms and begins to encourage a free press, the country finds itself in a moment of historic change.

As part of the still unfolding story of Myanmar, Open Hands Initiative and The GroundTruth Project are pleased to announce a reporting fellowship in Burma.