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Myanmar lifts political, religious media censorship

For nearly five decades, media organizations in Myanmar have been required to submit their content to a censorship board prior to publication. Now, the last of the restrictions has been lifted.

The head of the government's Press Scrutiny and Registration Department, Tint Swe, said on Monday that political and religious publications would be free from government scrutiny, the last type of publication to have censorship requirements lifted. Pre-publication requirements on sports, entertainment, and some other stories were lifted last year.

"For now on, local publications do not need to send their stories to the censorship board," Swe said.

Lifting the ban is the latest in a series of democratic reforms introduced in Myanmar, which is also known as Burma, since the government of President Thein Sein took office in March 2011.

Some forms of censorship still remain, however. An official from the information ministry told the AFP news agency that film censorship remained in the place, and television journalists still turned to the government for instructions regarding sensitive news.

mz/pfd (AFP, dpa)