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November 21, 2007

Peru silence condemned as press suffer a "black November" of assaults and threats from local officials

Reporters Without Borders today expressed its deep concern at threats and attacks by elected officials against journalists in several parts of the country throughout November, including a murder attempt, and slammed government silence on the issue. The mayor of Huari in the west, his armed henchmen and several municipal officials came close to killing journalist José Ramírez Villacorta in an ambush on 11 November. Two days later, the mayor of Otuzco in northwestern Peru, brutally ejected a... MORE
November 21, 2007

Security forces accused of complicity in arson attack on Leader Publications

Reporters Without Borders condemns an arson attack early today on the printing press of the Sunday Leader media group, which is located in a high security area outside Colombo. The approximately 15 gunmen who staged the attack must have had support within the security forces, the press freedom organisation said. "Armed men have once again attacked a independent news media in a high security area of the capital," Reporters Without Borders said. "It unfortunately shows that the press freedom... MORE
November 21, 2007

Al-Arabiya journalists prevented from covering social unrest

Reporters Without Borders today called on the authorities to stop harassing journalists working for the Dubai-based satellite TV station Al-Arabiya. Two of the station’s journalists have been detained in the past three weeks after covering anti-government demonstrations. “This is not the first time that journalists trying to report on popular discontent have been prevented from working by the police,” the organisation said. “The authorities target the press in order to suppress accusations of... MORE
November 21, 2007

Rights group links journalist's murder to Uzbek poll

November 21, 2007 (RFE/RL) -- A representative for a respected Moscow-based rights group has linked the recent murder of a prominent Kyrgyz journalist to Uzbekistan's presidential election scheduled for next month. Alisher Saipov, an ethnic Uzbek whose reports frequently criticized the authorities in neighboring Uzbekistan, was gunned down in southern Kyrgyzstan on October 24. Vitalii Ponomarev of the Russian-based rights group Memorial today alleged that Uzbekistan's intelligence agency had... MORE
November 21, 2007

They made thrones tremble

NEW YORK, Nov 21 (IPS) - Nearly 500 journalists have been murdered in the last 15 years, according to the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), and about 85 percent of those crimes have gone unpunished. On Tuesday, CPJ honoured five journalists who embody courage in the face of censorship with its 2007 International Press Freedom Awards. The situation in the countries from which four of the five award winners were chosen (Russia, China, Pakistan and Mexico) exemplifies this... MORE
November 21, 2007

Musharraf’s popularity nosedives following media blackout

LAHORE: Political pundit and talk show host Dr Shahid Masood appeared live from Dubai on Geo News last Saturday. This was no ordinary broadcast. Geo, which had been beaming worldwide from the Arab emirate since its inception in 2002, had been verbally informed that it was being shut down. “We are proud of this moment,” said Masood, visibly shaken as a clock counted down the minutes to the threatened shutdown. He blamed the Musharraf government for pressuring the “government of the friendly... MORE
November 20, 2007

Vietnam: RSF calls for release of French journalist arrested while "peacefully promoting freedom of expression"

(RSF/IFEX) - RSF condemns the arrest of three activists of the pro-democracy party Viet Tan (Vietnam Reform Party), including Frenchwoman Nguyen Thi Thanh Van, a renowned freedom of expression activist. Nguyen Thi Thanh Van is a regular contributor to the Vietnamese community media in exile: the monthly "Viet Nam Dan Chu" ("Democracy in Vietnam") and Radio Chan Troi Moi (New Horizon - the voice of a democratic and reformed Vietnam). She is also secretary general of the France-Vietnam Mutual Aid... MORE
November 20, 2007

Turkey: Diyarbakir broadcaster harassed over Kurdish-language programming

(BIANET/IFEX) - Gün TV, a local station in Diyarbakir, southeastern Turkey, is the only channel to have broadcast Kurdish programmes for the past year and a half. However, the channel, which is legally allowed to broadcast four hours a week in Kurdish, has faced many difficulties, both over its news and music programmes. Gün Radio-TV representative Ahmet Birsin says that, because they are obliged to translate all programming into Turkish as well, they have to organise dubbing, translation and... MORE
November 20, 2007

Reynosa mayor threatens "Reforma" newspaper journalist

(CEPET/IFEX) - Miguel Domínguez Gallegos, the "Reforma" newspaper correspondent in Reynosa, a city in Tamaulipas state, was verbally attacked by Francisco Javier García Cabeza de Vaca, the acting mayor of the city, which is located in Mexico's northeast. The incident took place during an 11 November 2007 event at which local members of the National Action Party (Partido Acción Nacional, PAN) protested the kidnapping of one of their candidates for city council in the 11 November elections held... MORE
November 20, 2007

South Africa: Growing trend of employers silencing criticisms as three workers disciplined, one dismissed

(FXI/IFEX) - The Freedom of Expression Institute is disturbed by the growing number of violations of the freedom of expression of workers. Four cases have been brought to the FXI's attention of workers who are either being disciplined for utterances they have made, or who have already been dismissed. These cases point to a growing trend where attempts are being made by employers to silence criticisms of their management practices, calling into question the commitment of employers to upholding... MORE

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