first_imgNews December 5, 2013 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Letter to US Defense Secretary ahead of Manama Dialogue News News to go further Organisation June 15, 2020 Find out more News BahrainMiddle East – North Africa Sincerely, RSF_en Receive email alerts Coronavirus “information heroes” – journalism that saves lives Reporters Without Borders wrote to US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on December 2 to share its concerns about freedom of information in Bahrain ahead of his visit to the kingdom for the December 6-7 Manama Dialogue on security in the Persian Gulf.The letter asks him to raise the issue of freedom of information in his talks with Bahraini officials.Read the letter: Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel US Department of Defense 1400 Defense Pentagon Washington, DC 20301-1400 Paris, December 2 2013Dear Secretary Hagel,Reporters Without Borders, an international organization that defends freedom of information, would like to share with you its concerns about the situation of freedom of information in Bahrain ahead of your participation in the Manama Dialogue’s ninth session on December 6-7.In the two years since the start of a popular uprising in Bahrain, the kingdom’s authorities have crushed demonstrations calling for political reforms and have not hesitated to target journalists and other news providers covering this protest movement and the methods used by the security forces to suppress it.The Bahraini authorities continue to obstruct the work of journalists and to arrest, imprison and prosecute news providers in violation of the international undertakings it gave to the UN Human Rights Council in 2012.Seven news and information providers are currently detained in Bahrain:- Arrested in 2011, Hassan Ma’atooq received a three-year jail sentence from a national security court for posting photos of people who were injured during major protests in February 2011.- A blogger and head of the human rights bureau of the Al-Haq Movement for Civil Liberties and Democracy, Abduljalil Al-Singace has been held since March 2011 and is now serving a sentence of life imprisonment that a high court of appeal upheld on September 4, 2012. He is one of 13 opposition leaders and activists convicted of “creating and running a terrorist group aimed at changing the constitution and system of monarchy (…) by force,” “being in contact with a foreign terrorist group that acts in the interests of a foreign country and carries out hostile actions against Bahrain,” and “raising funds for this group.”- The well-known photographer Ahmed Humaidan was arrested on December 29, 2012 on a charge of attacking a police station in Sitra on April 8, 2012, although he was not there that day. His trial began on February 12, 2013 but the prosecution keeps on postponing hearings because it has difficulty producing witnesses. The next hearing is set for December 19. His lawyer has repeatedly but unsuccessfully requested an independent investigation into his client’s allegations of torture. His requests to the prison authorities to let his client be examined by a doctor have also been unsuccessful.- Arrested in July 2013, the photographer Hussain Hubail was charged on August 21 with “managing (electronic) accounts calling for the government’s overthrow,” “promoting and inciting hatred against the government,” “inciting others to disobey the law,” and calling for illegal demonstrations. He is also accused of “contributing to the Twitter account of the February 14 media network.” According to witness accounts, he has been mistreated and even tortured. A hearing in his case was scheduled for November 28 but was postponed until December 22.- Arrested at his home by masked plainclothesmen on July 31, 2013, the blogger Jassim Al-Nuaimi is accused of using social media to incite anti-government hatred and to call for illegal demonstrations. He was particularly active during the uprising, posting on the 14Feb media website. After being held for several days at the General Directorate of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), he was transferred to Dry Dock prison on August 3, only to be transferred back to the CID and then forced to sign a confession before a prosecutor. Witnesses say he has been tortured or mistreated. A hearing scheduled for November 28 was postponed until December 22.- Freelance cameraman Qassim Zain Al-Deen was arrested at his home on August 2, 2013, in the run-up to the “Tamarod” demonstrations in mid-August, and has been held at the Dry Dock detention centre ever since. On November 26, a judge postponed his hearing until January 20, 2014. The charges against him include vandalism inside the detention centre. – The photographer Abdullah Salman Al-Jerdabi was arrested on September 13, 2013 while covering a demonstration in the village of Mussala. He is charged with participating in “illegal gatherings.” The blogger Mohamed Hassan was released a few weeks after being arrested on July 31 but is still facing charges of “managing (electronic) accounts calling for the government’s overthrow,” promoting and inciting hatred against the government, inciting others to disobey the law, and calling for illegal demonstrations.Many news providers have reported being mistreated during detention. These claims should be independently investigated. The investigations so far carried out have been at the very least partial and have resulted in the withdrawal of all charges or acquittals or derisory prison sentences. The journalists who have been victims of such denial of justice include Nazeeha Saeed, a reporter for France 24 and Monte-Carlo Doualiya. The policewoman accused of torturing her during detention in 2011 was acquitted on appeal on June 23, 2013.Impunity reigns. No independent investigation has been conducted into 22-year-old cameraman Ahmed Ismail Hussain’s death on March 31, 2012. Hussain was fatally shot while covering a peaceful demonstration in Salmabad, a village southwest of the capital. After Karim Fakhrawi, co-founder of the only opposition newspaper, Al-Wasat, died in detention in April 2011, two policemen were initially sentenced to seven years in prison for torturing him to death, but their jail terms were reduced to three years on appeal on October 27, 2013.The netizen Zakariya Rashid Hassan, administrator of a now-closed online forum that provided information about the village of Al-Dair, where he was born, died in detention on April 9, 2011, seven days after his arrest on charges of inciting hatred, disseminating false news, promoting sectarianism and calling for the regime’s overthrow in online forums. The interior ministry claimed that he died as a result of sickle cell anemia complications, but his family has ruled this out. The authorities’ tolerance of such abuses violates Bahrain’s international obligations.The authorities furthermore mean to control the media. This is a country where six of the seven daily newspapers are controlled by associates of the royal family or government. The independence and impartiality of the media (and therefore freedom of information) is, at the very least, compromised.The Information Affairs Agency, created by a 2002 media law, was used to restrict media freedom during the 2011 unrest. It was responsible, for example, for the newspaper Al-Wasat’s closure for several months and the prosecution of its editor and co-founder, Mansoor Al-Jamri. It has many powers, including the power to censor or prevent the distribution of Bahraini publications, to close newspapers by means of judicial proceedings, and to block websites. Giving a government agency so much power is a serious threat to freedom of information.The government has been promising a new media law since 2012 that will supposedly be more progressive. Its architect is the current information minister, Sameera Rajab. But this new law has yet to be adopted and Bahrainis still do not know what provisions it will contain.We therefore think that it is important that you should raise the issue of freedom of information in Bahrain during your talks with Bahraini officials.I thank you in advance for the attention you give to this letter. October 14, 2020 Find out more March 17, 2021 Find out more Tenth anniversary of Bahraini blogger’s arrest German spyware company FinFisher searched by public prosecutors BahrainMiddle East – North Africa Follow the news on Bahrain Christophe DeloireGeneral Secretary, Reporters Without Borders Help by sharing this information last_img read more

first_img Reporters Without Borders has written to Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper asking him to use the Francophone Summit being held in Bucharest on 28-29 September 2006 to raise the cases of four jailed Vietnamese cyber-dissidents with Vietnamese officials attending the summit. Nguyen Vu Binh, Truong Quoc Huy, Le Nguyen Sang and Huynh Nguyen Dao are all in prison for having expressed their views on the Internet. Follow the news on Vietnam Help by sharing this information Three more independent reporters arrested in Vietnam RSF_en Vietnam sentences journalist Tran Thi Tuyet Dieu to eight years in prison News “Dear Prime Minister,During your meetings with Vietnamese officials at the next summit of the Francophone countries on 28-29 September in Bucharest, Reporters Without Borders asks you to intercede on behalf of Nguyen Vu Binh, Truong Quoc Huy, Le Nguyen Sang and Huynh Nguyen Dao, four cyber-dissidents who are currently in prison in Vietnam just for expressing their views online.A former journalist with an official publication of the Communist Party of Vietnam, Nguyen Vu Binh is a pro-democracy activist and founder of Democracy and Freedom, an independent organisation. He was arrested in 2002 after writing many articles calling for political and economic reform that were posted on the Internet. He was sentenced on 31 December 2003 to seven years in prison and three years of house arrest. The severity of his sentence was motivated in part by his testimony to the US congress in 2002 about human rights violation in Vietnam, and by one if his articles, condemned as reactionary, criticising a 1999 treaty between Vietnam and China.Truong Quoc Huy, 25, was arrested on 18 August 2006 by plain-clothes police who followed him into an Internet café in Ho Chi Minh City and caught him as he was connecting to a democracy chat room. He had just been held for nine months without trial because of his online activities prior to his arrest with his brother and a friend in October 2005. He is accused of wanting to “overthrow the government” and of giving interviews to foreign radio stations after getting out of prison in which he expressed support for the 8406 Group, a pro-democracy movement formed in April.Le Nguyen Sang (the pseudonym used by Nguyen Hoang Long) and Huynh Nguyen Dao (the pseudonym of Huynh Viet Lang) were reportedly arrested in Ho Chi Minh City on or around 14 August. The authorities have not said anything about their arrest but it is believed they are being held because of what they wrote on the Internet and because of their suspected membership of the People’s Democratic Party of Vietnam, an organisation formed by exiles that is illegal inside Vietnam. These two cyber-dissidents were arrested at the same time, and for the same reasons, as Cong Thanh Do, a US citizen who was released on 21 September after foreign diplomats intervened.These four citizens are imprisoned in Vietnam for expressing their democratic views online. Contrary to what the Vietnamese authorities say, none of them is a terrorist, a criminal or a spy. They are being punished for using the Internet to publicly voice their disagreement with the one-party state’s official line.Vietnam will soon join the World Trade Organisation. It has also been chosen to host the summit of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum. We believe that the normalisation of diplomatic relations with this country and its integration into the world economy should be accompanied by concrete advances in respect for human rights.We welcomed the release of Pham Hong Son on 30 August as an encouraging gesture by Vietnam’s new leaders. We have nonetheless seen that they continue to suppress free expression and to imprison dissident Internet users.As the International Organisation of Francophone Countries (OIF) carries out political initiatives on behalf of peace, democracy and human rights, we ask you to take advantage of this coming summit to affirm your commitment to online free expression and your support for Vietnamese cyber-dissidents.We thank you in advance for the interest you take in this letter.Sincerely,”Robert MénardSecretary-General Receive email alerts April 22, 2021 Find out more Organisation Le Nguyen Sang and Huynh Nguyen Dao————-Create your blog with Reporters without borders: RSF laureates support jailed Vietnamese journalist Pham Doan Trang September 27, 2006 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Plea to Canada’s PM to raise cases of cyber-dissidents at Francophone Summit News News April 27, 2021 Find out more Reporters Without Borders has written to Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper asking him to use the Francophone Summit being held in Bucharest on 28-29 September to raise the cases of four jailed Vietnamese cyber-dissidents with Vietnamese officials attending the summit. Nguyen Vu Binh (picture), Truong Quoc Huy, Le Nguyen Sang and Huynh Nguyen Dao are all in prison for having expressed their views on the Internet. VietnamAsia – Pacific April 7, 2021 Find out more VietnamAsia – Pacific News to go furtherlast_img read more

first_img —————————————————————————-UpdateOn April 8, Manipur High Court revoked the detention of Kishorechandra Whangkhem after having to spend 130 days behind bars. RSF welcomes this decision and calls on authorities to guarantee the journalist recovers his full freedom as soon as possible. —————————————————————————–Kishorechandra Wangkhem, a reporter and editorialist with the TV channel ISTV, was formally notified of the decision by the Manipur authorities today. IndiaAsia – Pacific Religious intoleranceOnline freedoms ImprisonedFreedom of expression News Kishorechandra Wangkhem (left) is to be jailed for a year for daring to criticize Manipur chief minister N. Biren Singh (centre) and his support for Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (photos: Archives Wangkhemcha Wangthoi – AFP / PIB). Organisation to go further Receive email alerts RSF_en IndiaAsia – Pacific Religious intoleranceOnline freedoms ImprisonedFreedom of expression News The Manipur authorities said he will be detained for a year in order to “prevent him from acting in any matter prejudicial to the security of the state.” India: RSF denounces “systemic repression” of Manipur’s media RSF issued an “incident report” in July about the danger that India will fall further in RSF’s World Press Freedom Index. It is currently ranked 138th out of 180 countries. Refusing to accept defeat, the authorities then resorted to the National Security Act to have Wangkhem arrested again on 26 November. This draconian law allows the authorities to detain anyone preventively on national security grounds for up to a year without any form of trial. March 3, 2021 Find out more April 27, 2021 Find out morecenter_img December 19, 2018 – Updated on April 9, 2019 Indian journalist to be jailed for a year for criticizing Hindu nationalism “The determination with which the Manipur authorities have punished Kishorechandra Wangkhem with New Delhi’s blessing is a shocking warning for the entire journalistic profession. We demand his immediate release, especially as the arbitrary nature of this detention order is unworthy of Indian democracy.” Follow the news on India A year in prison without any trial “It is unacceptable that a journalist should be imprisoned for a year just for criticizing the government,” said Daniel Bastard, the head of the Asia-Pacific desk at Reporters Without Borders (RSF). June 10, 2021 Find out more In rural India, journalists face choice between covering pandemic and survival In the offending video, posted on Facebook, Wangkhem referred to the region’s chief minister as a “puppet” of Prime Minister Modi and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS, National Volunteer Organization), a Hindu nationalist paramilitary group. An Indian journalist in the northeastern state of Manipur is to be jailed without any form of trial for a year under the preventive detention provisions of the National Security Act simply for criticizing Hindu nationalism, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Manipur’s chief minister in a video. RSF demands release of detained Indian journalist Siddique Kappan, hospitalised with Covid-19 After posting the video, Wangkhem was initially arrested by the police in Imphal, the state capital, on a criminal code charge of sedition on 21 November. But a judge quickly released him on bail, saying the video was “a mere expression of opinion against the public conduct of public figures.” Help by sharing this information News Newslast_img read more

first_img TurkeyEurope – Central Asia News Help by sharing this information Organisation March 10, 2005 – Updated on January 20, 2016 An Austrian journalist has spent one month in prison Journalists threatened with imprisonment under Turkey’s terrorism law Reporters Without Borders has again demanded the release of Austrian journalist Sandra Bakutz, who has now been held in prison in Turkey for one month.Bakutz, a journalist for Austrian radio Orange 94.0 and for the Germany weekly Junge Welt, was arrested by police on 10 February 2005, at Ataturk Airport in Istanbul. She has been charged with ‘belonging to an illegal organisation.’ “This imprisonment is based on vague suspicion. A date has been fixed for her trial and there is no justification for holding her in custody until then,” the worldwide press freedom organisation said. “She went to Turkey to do her work as a journalist and should not be treated as a terrorist.”In addition, the authorities have failed to respect the usual judicial procedure, since no international arrest warrant was served on Bakutz.She was taken on 16 February to a prison in Pasakapisi, Istanbul, and later transferred to Gebze jail, 50 kilometres further south. She was finally moved on 1st March 2005 to Ankara’s Ulucanlar Prison, notorious for torture that took place there over a long period and which holds most of Turkey’s political prisoners.Her case is to go before a high court with the first date fixed for 30 March. She faces between 10 and 15 years in prison. She is being defended by three Turkish lawyers: Selçuk Kozagagli, Özgür Yilmaz and Betül Vangölü.Turkey’s Chief Prosecutor, Mustafa Kelkit in Ankara is proceeding against her under Article 168 paragraph 2 of the Turkish criminal code for “belonging to an illegal organisation” – the extreme left Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party/Front (DHKP/C) classed by the United States and the European Union as a terrorist organisation. No evidence of her membership of the organisation has been produced. Turkey’s never-ending judicial persecution of former newspaper editor April 2, 2021 Find out more TurkeyEurope – Central Asia April 28, 2021 Find out more Receive email alertscenter_img News News Her lawyers made an application for bail while she awaits trial on 7 March, but the Turkish authorities have so far not seen fit to respond.Bakutz is in good health, but she is not permitted to telephone or have any other contacts with the outside world. News RSF_en Human rights groups warns European leaders before Turkey summit April 2, 2021 Find out more An Austrian journalist has been held in prison for one month in questionable conditions awaiting her trial that is due to open in Ankara on 30 March. Reporters Without Borders called for her immediate release, saying that there is no justification for holding her in custody until then. to go further Follow the news on Turkeylast_img read more

first_img MalaysiaAustraliaQatarAsia – PacificMiddle East – North Africa Media independenceProtecting sources WhistleblowersJudicial harassment Follow the news on Asia – Pacific As well as targeting the journalists, the police have also arrested Mohamad Rayhan Kabir, a Bangladeshi migrant worker turned whistleblower, who spoke openly on camera to Al Jazeera for their story about migrant worker arrests. Kabir is about to be deported. In rural India, journalists face choice between covering pandemic and survival Organisation Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is disturbed by the Malaysian government’s growing harassment of media outlets that don’t toe the official line, including a raid on the Kuala Lumpur bureau of the Qatari TV news broadcaster Al Jazeera on 4 August and a decision to expel two Australian journalists employed by the bureau two days later. Searches Australian Al Jazeera journalists, reporter/senior producer Drew Ambrose (left), cameraman Craig Hansen (center) and producer Jenni Henderson (right), involved in a documentary about the arrests of undocumented migrants, arrive at the Bukit Aman police headquarters in Kuala Lumpur on July 10, 2020. Ambrose and Henderson were formally notified on 6 August that they would be expelled because they made a statement “aimed at damaging Malaysia’s image” (photo: Mohd Rasfan / AFP). Malaysiakini news website editor Steven Gan appeared in court in July on an absurd contempt of court charge prompted solely by comments critical of the judiciary posted by readers, while Tashny Sukumaran, a reporter for Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post daily, has been summoned twice for questioning by police, on 6 May and 1 July. MalaysiaAustraliaQatarAsia – PacificMiddle East – North Africa Media independenceProtecting sources WhistleblowersJudicial harassment RSF_en Receive email alerts “What with intimidation, harassment, violation of the confidentiality of sources and expulsions, the current government’s attitude towards Al Jazeera’s journalists is clearly that of a dictatorial regime and recalls the worst periods in Malaysia’s history,” said Daniel Bastard, the head of RSF’s Asia-Pacific desk. Ambrose and Henderson are among seven journalists working at the bureau who are being investigated for sedition, defamation and violating the Communications and Multimedia Act in a report broadcast by Al Jazeera on 3 July about a wave of arrests of migrant workers in the course of efforts to combat the coronavirus epidemic. Help by sharing this information Return to the past News News News June 2, 2021 Find out more “We urge Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin’s to order the immediate withdrawal of all charges against this TV channel’s journalists, who have just done their jobs by investigating an issue of major public interest. If nothing is done, Malaysia’s ranking in the World Press Freedom Index is likely to plummet.” The two journalists, Drew Ambrose and Jenni Henderson, were formally notified yesterday that their work visas were not being renewed. Immigration director-general Khairul Dzaimee Daud said Al Jazeera had broadcast statements that were “inaccurate and aimed at damaging Malaysia’s image.” The seven journalists, who were summoned for questioning on 10 July, are also the targets of online hate campaigns and death threats that are being orchestrated by pro-government trolls. After a change of government through the polls in May 2018, the first in modern Malaysia’s history, the overall environment for journalists improved dramatically. But, since the fall of Mahathir Mohamad’s reformist government in February and his replacement as prime minister by Muhyiddin Yassin, press freedom violations have increased alarmingly, triggering fears of a return to the past. August 7, 2020 RSF denounces Malaysia’s harassment of Al Jazeera journalists to go further June 10, 2021 Find out more Malaysia is ranked 101st out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2020 World Press Freedom Index. June 7, 2021 Find out more As part of this investigation, the police searched Al Jazeera’s bureau on 4 August, seizing two computers. The police also raided Astro Satellite TV and Unifi Internet TV,  two Malaysian TV operators that retransmit Al Jazeera. News Pakistani TV anchor censored after denouncing violence against journalists Mongolia : RSF urges presidential candidates to voice support for press freedom last_img read more

first_imgNews Help by sharing this information SyriaMiddle East – North Africa RSF_en Toll of ten years of civil war on journalists in Syria The information ministry has threatened Arab and foreign media that are “illegally” in Syria, while Syrian journalists and bloggers continue to be arrested.In a 9 March communiqué, the information ministry threatened to take measures against Arab and foreign journalists who have entered the country “illegally” and against anyone cooperating with them. The minister accused the foreign media of complicity with the “terrorists” and, by covering their activities” of “justifying their crimes.” He also accused them of “fabricating” reports.The minister reiterated the view that, if news media allow their reporters to enter Syria illegally, they are morally and legally responsible for what happens to them. This is similar to the position that the government took after the bombardment of the Media Centre in the Homs district of Baba Amr in which Rémi Ochlik and Marie Colvin were killed, Paul Conroy and Edith Bouvier were injured and two other journalists, William Daniels and Javier Espinosa were trapped.The Syrian authorities have boasted of giving permission to 365 Arab and foreign media to enter the country since the start of the uprising in March 2011. Reporters Without Borders nonetheless receives reports every day of Syrian consulates refusing to issue visas to news media or freelance journalists. And those that receive permission are not necessarily able to work freely and independently, without risking arrest or death.And while the minister openly threatens foreign reporters, Syrian journalists and bloggers continue to be arrested.In one of the latest incidents, Othman Matar, the father of the journalist Gheith Matar, was arrested on 8 March.The 12 young people arrested on the evening of 7 March in the restaurant Niniar, in the Damascus neighbourhood of Bab Sharqi, included Yara Michel Shammas, 20, an information technology specialist who is the daughter of a human rights lawyer active in Facebook, Jehad Jamal, a blogger known by the name of Milan, who had been released on 29 December after two and a half months in detention and Etab Labbad, a 20-year-old journalism student who has worked with various newspapers and websites such as Kassioun and Baladna.Reporters Without Borders reiterates its call for the release of Mazen Darwish, the head of the Syrian Centre for Media and Freedom of Expression, and eight other people held since the 16 February raid on the centre – Hussein Ghareer, Hani Zetani, Joan Farso, Bassam Al-Ahmad, Mansour Al-Omari, Abdel Rahman Hamada, Ayham Ghazzoul and Shady Yazbek.Syria is one of the countries on the “Enemies of the Internet” list that Reporters Without Borders released yesterday. The Media Centres created by the Local Coordination Committees in Syria were awarded the 2012 Netizen Prize. Syria is ranked 176th out of 179 countries in the Reporters Without Borders press freedom index.Many journalists and netizens are meanwhile still detained without any information being available about their current status. This partial list was prepared with help from the Syrian Centre for Media and Freedom of Expression:- Said Dairky, an engineer employed by the national TV station who was arrested on 14 January. – Alaa Shueiti, a cyber-activist arrested on 15 October in Homs.- Mos’ab Massoud, a journalist with Addounia, who was arrested on 1 October after posting an article on Elaph headlined “The ministry of media and information and the question of sectarianism.”- Firas Fayyad, a filmmaker who was arrested on 1 December at Damascus airport as he was about to fly to Dubai.- Bilal Ahmad Bilal, a Falesteen TV producer who was arrested in the Damascus suburb of Mo’adamieh on 13 September.- Abdelmajid Rashed Al-Rahmoun, who was arrested on 23 August in Hama.- Tarek Said Balsha, a photographer arrested in Latakia on 19 August. There has been no news of him since then.- Muhammed Nihad Kurdiyya, a mechanical engineer who was arrested in Latakia on 18 August as he was about to be interviewed by Al-Jazeera.- Adel Walid Kharsah, a reporter who was arrested while covering demonstrations in Deraa on 17 August.- Olwan Zouaiter, a journalist who has written for many Lebanese dailies. He was arrested by intelligence officials in the northern city of Raqqah on 16 March after returning from Libya. He was initially sentenced to five years in prison for allegedly contacting the Syrian opposition while abroad. The sentence was subsequently reduced to 13 months. He is serving it in Raqqah prison.According to rumours circulating since 10 February, the detained writer and opposition activist Hussein Issou died in detention and his body was taken to the morgue of the military hospital in Damascus. A war of information or disinformation about his fate has been waged since then. Issou was originally arrested on 3 September in the northeastern city of Al-Hassakah. Reporters Without Borders has urged the Syrian authorities to shed light on the status. His family does not know if he is alive or dead.The status of these two persons is also of concern:- Moheeb Al-Nawaty, a Palestinian journalist who had lived in Norway since 2007. He went missing on 5 January 2011, nine days after arriving in Damascus. He is a Fatah member and used to work for the website of the satellite TV station Al-Arabiya.- Tal Al-Mallouhi, a 19-year-old student and blogger who has been detained since December 2009. She was brought before a state security court in Damascus for the second time on 17 January 2011. Reportedly accused of spying for the United States, she is being held in Duma prison, near Damascus. Internet users all over the world have been calling for her release. News Wave of Kurdish arrests of Syrian journalists Related documents Authorities threaten foreign media, continue to arrest Syrian journalists and bloggers – Arabic versionPDF – 52.6 KB March 8, 2021 Find out more to go furthercenter_img SyriaMiddle East – North Africa Follow the news on Syria Receive email alerts March 12, 2021 Find out more February 3, 2021 Find out more March 13, 2012 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Authorities threaten foreign media, continue to arrest Syrian journalists and bloggers Organisation News Damascus TV presenter arrested under cyber-crime law Newslast_img read more

first_img Help by sharing this information LibyaMiddle East – North Africa Condemning abusesProtecting journalistsMedia independence Armed conflictsConflicts of interestCorruptionImprisonedImpunityCitizen-journalistsFreedom of expressionPredatorsViolence News Receive email alerts February 23, 2021 Find out more to go further News Issued yesterday by the general broadcasting authority of the interim Libyan government that is based in the east of the county and is controlled by Gen. Khalifa Haftar, the order accuses the 11 TV channels of “justifying terrorism” and “threatening social peace.”The TV channels named in the order are Libya al Ahrar TV, Panorama TV, Attanasoh TV, Salam TV, Al Wassat Radio and Television, the Arraed Group, Annabaa TV, Febrayer TV,  Al Watan TV, Libyan National Television and Arrasmia TV.“The Libyan media are embroiled in an unprecedented crisis and several have found themselves enlisted willy-nilly into belligerent factions,” said Souhaieb Khayati, the head of RSF’s North Africa desk. “As well as using the media as propaganda tools, the Libyan conflict’s political and military actors are turning into news censors. This latest violation of the public’s right to news and information is just aggravating the national crisis. We call for these bans to be lifted.”Libya is ranked 162nd out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2019 World Press Freedom Index. Six imprisoned journalists to finally appear in court in Istanbul Follow the news on Libya July 17, 2019 LIBYA : eleven TV channels banned in eastern Libya Organisation Reporters Without Borders (RSF) calls on the interim government based in Tobruk, in eastern Libya, to explain the order it has issued to municipal governments not to cooperate with 11 TV channels. This ban must be lifted in order to respect the public’s right to information, RSF said. LibyaMiddle East – North Africa Condemning abusesProtecting journalistsMedia independence Armed conflictsConflicts of interestCorruptionImprisonedImpunityCitizen-journalistsFreedom of expressionPredatorsViolence June 24, 2020 Find out more On Libyan revolution’s 10th anniversary, authorities urged to guarantee press freedom RSF_en News News Well-known Libyan journalist missing since his arrest December 17, 2019 Find out morelast_img read more

first_img Help by sharing this information News China: Political commentator sentenced to eight months in prison ChinaHong KongAsia – Pacific Protecting journalists PhotoreportageJudicial harassmentViolence The prohibition on face-covering using a colonial-era Emergency Regulations Ordinance was proclaimed and came into force on Saturday October 4th despite widespread criticism. According to the Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA), journalists that carry a protective mask are at risk of being arrested, detained and prosecuted under the law, although they may invoke professional motives as their defence. Footage of reporters being requested by police to remove their gas-mask have already surfaced on social media.“Over the past four months, journalists in Hong Kong have been exposed to massive doses of tear gas, pepper spray and fumes that pose a direct threat to their health,” says Cédric Alviani, head of Reporters Without Borders (RSF) East Asia Bureau, who urges Hong Kong authorities to “ensure that reporters are formally exempt from the ban and effectively free to protect themselves while carrying on their mission.”Officially presented as a response to the violence that erupted during the pro-democracy demonstrations over the past weeks, the ban prohibits the wearing of full or partial facial covering, including face paint, at any public assembly, whether legal or not.Since the beginning of the demonstrations in June, journalists have been under tremendous pressure in Hong Kong and many of them have also been victim of abuse, leading RSF to publicly address Chief Executive Carrie Lam in an open letter that received a canned answer without commitment.In the RSF World Press Freedom Index, Hong Kong, a special administrative region of China, plummeted from 18th in 2002 to 73rd this year. RSF_en Organisation PHOTO: PHILIP FONG / AFP Mongolia : RSF urges presidential candidates to voice support for press freedom June 2, 2021 Find out more News ChinaHong KongAsia – Pacific Protecting journalists PhotoreportageJudicial harassmentViolence center_img Hong-Kong’s face-covering prohibition implemented last Saturday threatens journalists’ right to protect themselves while reporting, denounces Reporters Without Borders (RSF). October 8, 2019 – Updated on October 16, 2019 Hong Kong: mask-ban endangers journalists to go further June 7, 2021 Find out more June 2, 2021 Find out more Pakistani TV anchor censored after denouncing violence against journalists News Follow the news on Asia – Pacific Receive email alerts Newslast_img read more

first_img Bui Chat, the head of the independent publishing house Giay Vun (“Recycled Paper), was released on 2 May after being held for three days on his return from Argentina but was briefly detained again on 3 May for more questioning.The authorities have also kept the “Freedom to Publish Prize” which he received from the International Publishers Association (IPA) during his visit to Buenos Aires and which was confiscated when he was arrested on 30 April.Bjorn Smith-Simonsen, who heads the IPA’s Freedom to Publish Committee, hailed Chat’s release but voiced concern about the fact that the authorities were still questioning him. “Vietnamese law theoretically permits his detention for up to 12 months before charges are pressed,” he said.Reporters Without Borders condemns the way the authorities are treating Chat, who has committed no crime or offence.The IPA has awarded it “Freedom to Publish” prize to several journalists in the past, including Iran’s Shalah Lahiji in 2006 and Zimbabwe’s Trevor N’cube in 2007. It was also awarded posthumously to the Russian newspaper reporter Anna Politkovskaya and the Turkish-Armenian newspaper editor Hrant Dink.——Detained for winning “Freedom to Publish Prize02-05-2011Reporters Without Borders condemns underground publisher and poet Bui Chat’s arrest at Tan Son Nhat airport on 30 April. The founder of the Giay Vun publishing house, Chat had just returned from Buenos Aires, where he had received the “Freedom to Publish Prize” from the International Publishers Association (IPA).“The Vietnamese authorities gave no reason for Chat’s arrest but it seems directly linked to the prize he received,” Reporters Without Borders said. “Although Vietnam claims to have made significant progress on human rights, journalists, netizens and now publishers continue to be jailed if they dare to defy the government by voicing or relaying dissident views.”The IPA condemned the Chat’s arrest, describing him as a “courageous underground publisher” who had published the works of “pavement poets” and who had “helped create an independent publishing movement.”The authorities seized Chat’s award and the prize certificate when they arrested him.Reporters Without Borders calls on the authorities to release Chat immediately and to abandon any plans to prosecute him. Three more independent reporters arrested in Vietnam to go further VietnamAsia – Pacific RSF_en Receive email alerts April 22, 2021 Find out more April 7, 2021 Find out more April 27, 2021 Find out more Help by sharing this information Vietnam sentences journalist Tran Thi Tuyet Dieu to eight years in prisoncenter_img News News May 5, 2011 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Independent publisher freed, but questioned again Follow the news on Vietnam Organisation News VietnamAsia – Pacific RSF laureates support jailed Vietnamese journalist Pham Doan Trang Newslast_img read more

first_img Receive email alerts Covid-19 emergency laws spell disaster for press freedom News El SalvadorAmericas Organisation Reporters Without Borders has mixed feelings about the guilty verdicts and sentences ranging from four to 30 years in prison that a court in San Salvador passed yesterday on 11 of the 31 people, mainly gang members, who were tried for the September 2009 murder of Franco-Spanish documentary film-maker Christian Poveda .“The sequence of events and the immediate motive seem clear but was a two-day trial sufficient to establish exactly who did what and to shed light on all the unexplained aspects of this case?” Reporters Without Borders said. “Did it reconstruct the entire story of what happened between Poveda and the young people who appeared in his film? And why was there such a big difference between the sentences requested by the prosecutors and those handed down?”The press freedom organization added: “We greet this verdict with a mixture of relief and frustration. It marks a victory in the fight against impunity but as an attempt to establish the truth, it may have been too hasty.”As instigators and perpetrators of Poveda’s murder, alleged gang leaders Luis Roberto “El Tiger” Vásquez Romero and José Alejandro “El Puma” Melara were each sentenced to 30 years in prison while a female associate, Keiry Geraldina Mallorga Álvarez, was given a 20-year sentence on a charge of complicity.Seven alleged gang members – Javier Amilcar Fuentes, Daniel Cabrera Flores, Juan Anastacio Jiménez, José Mateo Cruz, Armando Rivera, Carlos Peraza and Salvador Peraza – and a former policeman, Juan Napoleón Espinoza Pérez, were each sentenced to four years in prison on criminal association charges.The prosecution had requested 50-year jail terms for 30 defendants on charges of aggravated homicide, instigation and conspiracy, and 56 and a half years for Espinoza, the former policeman, on a charge of criminal association. Two other suspects were never found.Unanswered questionsThe testimony given during the two-day trial and reported in the Salvadoran press should be treated with considerable scepticism. Furthermore, the special court began the trial behind closed doors and did not allow journalists to attend until the second day.Poveda was accused of breaking his promise to provide financial help to the members of the “Mara 18” gang in exchange for being allowed to film them for 16 months for his documentary, La Vida Loca. The gang also allegedly felt betrayed when a pirated DVD version of the film began circulating. They claimed that Poveda had promised not to release the film in El Salvador and to edit out a couple of scenes that were compromising for some of the gang’s members.There is no longer any way of establishing whether Poveda really did promise La Vida Loca’s protagonists any financial aid. Claims of this kind are unfortunately often made to discredit a victim. The pirated DVD does not seem to be a credible motive inasmuch as Poveda had no interest in seeing a version of his film circulated and sold without his agreement. Who pirated it and with what purpose are questions that have yet to be answered.These developments clearly undermined the trust that had previously existed between Poveda and the gang members but fail to account for his murder. According to the prosecution, the decision to kill him was taken when Espinoza, who was then a policeman, told the gang that Poveda was acting a police informer against them. But what motive would Espinoza have for telling the gang this? Another unanswered question.According to the testimony given in court during the trial, 15 gang members met in a house on the outskirts of the capital on 25 August 2009 and sentenced Poveda to death in his absence. He was asked to come to a meeting five days later but was out of the country. The sentence was finally carried out on 2 September 2009 in La Campanera, the neighbourhood on the outskirts of the capital where La Vida Loca was filmed.“I have a meeting in La Campanera with four furious crazies,” he told Carole Solive, the film’s producer, and his close friend Alain Mingam, a member of the Reporters Without Borders board, shortly before his death.Despite its reservations about the outcome of this case, Reporters Without Borders is well aware of the difficulty of combating organized crime and rendering justice in such circumstances. Read the report on organized crime that Reporters Without Borders released on 24 February . April 11, 2020 Find out more El SalvadorAmericas Follow the news on El Salvador News to go furthercenter_img RSF_en March 10, 2011 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Mixed feelings as court jails 11 people for Franco-Spanish filmmaker’s murder October 7, 2020 Find out more Salvadorean president’s alarming hostility towards independent media News Salvadorean authorities must not obstruct coronavirus coverage News Help by sharing this information June 12, 2020 Find out morelast_img read more