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first_img May 19, 2021 Find out more CameroonAfrica Condemning abusesReports and statistics Freedom of expression October 26, 2018 Cameroon’s presidential election: RSF denounces press freedom violations Cameroonian reporter jailed since August, abandoned by justice system Organisation News © ALEXIS HUGUET / AFP Help by sharing this information Receive email alerts May 31, 2021 Find out more A few days after Paul Biya’s reelection, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) assesses the exactions against journalists during the presidential election. Follow the news on Camerooncenter_img to go further News Case against Amadou Vamoulké baseless, French lawyers tell Cameroon court April 23, 2021 Find out more News CameroonAfrica Condemning abusesReports and statistics Freedom of expression RSF_en Reporters Without Borders (RSF) deplores the many press freedom violations during this month’s presidential election in Cameroon, in which Paul Biya was reelected on 7 October for a seventh term with 71.28% of the votes, according to the results announced two weeks later, on 21 October.Several journalists were arrested on 21 October while trying to cover a peaceful march in Douala that was called by an opposition parliamentarian to protest against alleged electoral fraud, and was banned by the sub-prefect. Prince Fogue, a reporter for the daily Le Messager, Reuters correspondent Josiane Kouagheu and Kouagheu’s driver were arrested, taken to different Douala police stations and then released.“The arrest of these journalists underlines the climate of fear that the authorities have imposed in Cameroon,” RSF said. “By preventing coverage of an election-related opposition demonstration, President Paul Biya’s administration is showing that it does not allow the media to work properly and freely. These latest press freedom violations do not bode well for the situation of journalists and media during President Biya’s seventh term.” The day the results were announced was also marked by many Internet disruptions. A report by the organization Netblocks quoted Internet service providers as saying access to WhatsApp and Facebook was very restricted if not impossible.Election-day violenceMany journalists were unable to cover the voting on election day. Many voting stations demanded a special press accreditation for election coverage that had been issued by the communication ministry. This included the voting station at a public school in Bastos where Biya and members of his government went to vote. The prefect in the Biafra region also denied many journalists access to voting stations. The special press accreditation was also required in order to attend hearings on post- election disputes and the Constitutional Council’s announcement of the results. According to the information obtained by RSF, a reporter for La Voix du Centre, Yelva Eyono, was also detained for several hours of the police in Yaoundé.Press freedom violations were especially numerous in the English-speaking parts of the country. In Buea, the capital of South-West Region, a car belonging to the Cameroon Tribune newspaper was attacked by separatists who wanted to disrupt the election. According to the National Union of Cameroonian Journalists (SNJC), reporters working for Mutations, Le Messager and La Nouvelle Expression were threatened by government officials, who accused them of pro-opposition bias in their reporting. The authorities have posed a serious threat to journalists during Biya’s previous six terms as president. Last March, a journalist was physically attacked and humiliated by the transport minister’s bodyguards.Cameroon is ranked 129th out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2018 World Press Freedom Index. Cameroonian journalist Paul Chouta sentenced and fined in defamation case Newslast_img read more

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first_img Philippe Bertinchamps, a Belgian journalist based in Belgrade who reports for Le Courrier des Balkans, Mediapart, Libération, RFI, RTBF, Le Soir, La Tribune de Genève and other international French-language media, is currently threatened with expulsion by Serbia’s interior ministry (MUP) on the pretext that he poses an “obstacle to public order and national security.”No grounds have ever been offered to support this claim. Bertinchamps was previously summoned twice by Serbia’s Security Intelligence Agency (BIA) for “in-depth informative interviews” – the first time in April 2017, shortly after Serbia’s latest presidential election, which he covered.Given the extremely worrying situation of media freedom in Serbia, where independent journalists are nowadays the targets of physical and verbal violence and even hate campaigns by pro-government media, we believe that this case must, as a matter of urgency, be drawn to the attention of the Serbian, European and international public.Bertinchamps has been covering Serbia and most the western Balkans for the past ten years, and he has always displayed the utmost impartiality in his reporting. He has never had any run-ins with the police and, until 2017, he had always obtained his residence permits without any problem.Based in Belgrade since 2007, he is married to a Serbian woman who is a press photographer, and he is the father of a five-year-old girl. His application for a temporary residence permit on preservation of family unity grounds was nonetheless rejected by the MUP in April 2017 and again on 8 January 2018 without any explanation.A Serbian administration court ruled in his favour in November 2017, agreeing that the authorities should provide grounds for their rejection of his application. The MUP’s two refusals violate not only Serbian procedural regulations but also article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights, on respect for private and family life.As the Serbian authorities pay little heed to court rulings and the interior ministry’s behaviour is unworthy of a country seeking admission to the European Union, and because he also wants to defend his career as a journalist, Bertinchamps has decided not only to file a new complaint with the administrative court but also to refer his situation to the highest European and international authorities.A press conference will be held on 20 February at Belgrade’s Medija Centar at 2PMLe Courrier des BalkansMediapartLibérationReporters sans Frontières La Tribune de GenèveRTBF- InformationsRadio France InternationaleLe SoirPhilippe Bertinchamps (Filip Bertinšan), dopisnik velikog broja inostranih medija u Srbiji, među kojima su Le Courrier des Balkans, Mediapart, Liberation, RFI, RTBF, Le Soir i La Tribune de Geneve, trenutno trpi pretnje proterivanjem iz Srbije, od strane Ministarstva unutrašnjih poslova (MUP), pod izgovorom da predstavlja «pretnju javnom redu i nacionalnoj sigurnosti». Ova odluka nije ničim motivisana niti opravdana. Philippe Bertinchamps je pre njenog donošenja već bio pozivan od strane Srpske službe za bezbednost (BIA) na «detaljne informativne razgovore», u aprilu 2017, dan posle predsedničkih izbora u Srbiji, o kojima je kao novinar izveštavao.Imajući u vidu trenutni više nego zabrinjavajući položaj slobode medija u Srbiji, gde nezavisni novinari trpe fizičke i verbalne napade, pa čak i pozive na linčovanja od strane provladinih medija, smatramo da je neophodno obratiti se kako Srpskom, tako i Evropskom i međunarodnom javnom mnjenju.Philippe Bertinchamps svojim novinarskim radom pokriva Srbiju i većinu zemalja Zapadnog Balkana već punih deset godina u kojima je uvek pokazivao najveći stepen nepristrasnosti. Nikad nije imao problema sa policijom, i do 2017. godine je uvek dobijao dozvolu za boravak u skladu sa propisima.Kao belgijski državljanin, Philippe Bertinchamps živi u Beogradu od 2007. godine, oženjen je državljankom Srbije koja je takođe novinarka i fotoreporterka, a takođe je i otac petogodišnje devojčice. Odbijen je, bez ikakvog objašnjenja, nakon zahteva za privremeni boravak radi spajanja porodice od strane MUP-a, 8. januara 2018. godine, drugi put od aprila 2017. godine. U novembru 2017. godine je međutim Upravni sud Srbije doneo presudu da vlasti moraju da opravdaju razloge za odbijanje njegovog zahteva. Odluke MUP-a u ovom slučaju krše pravila postupka, ali i član 8. Evropske konvencije o ljudskim pravima o poštovanju privatnog i porodičnog života. Sudbina Philippe Bertinchamps-a i njegove porodice sada u potpunosti zavisi od volje srpskih vlasti.Imajući u vidu često ignorisanje pravosudnih odluka od strane srpskih vlasti, kako bi se sprečile policijske zloupotrebe koje ne priliče jednoj državi kandidatkinji za evropske integracije, ali i kako bi odbranio svoj posao kao novinar, Philippe Bertinchamps je odlučio da se ponovo žali upravnom sudu, i da se obrati najvišim evropskim i međunarodnim vlastima povodom svoje situacije.Konferencija za štampu će biti održana 20. februara u Medija centru u Beogradu.Le Courrier des BalkansMediapartLibérationReporters sans FrontièresLa Tribune de GenèveRTBF- InformationsRadio France InternationaleLe Soir SerbiaBelgiumEurope – Central Asia Protecting journalists Judicial harassment SerbiaBelgiumEurope – Central Asia Protecting journalists Judicial harassment News RSF_en to go further Philippe Bertinchamps/ © Dalibor Danilovic News Respect judicial independence in cases of two leading journalists in Serbia and Montenegro, RSF says RSF calls for a fully transparent investigation after mine kills two journalists in Azerbaijan Follow the news on Europe – Central Asia June 4, 2021 Find out morecenter_img The Serbian interior ministry has rejected a request by Philippe Bertinchamps, a Belgrade-base Belgian correspondent for various French-language media, for a temporary residence permit so that he can continue living with his Serbian family. Instead, he is now threatened with expulsion for posing an “obstacle to public order and national security.” Reporters Without Borders (RSF) condemns the decision and alerts international opinion to his plight, which follows an increase in harassment of journalists in Serbia. June 7, 2021 Find out more Help by sharing this information February 16, 2018 – Updated on February 19, 2018 Serbia threatens Belgrade-based Belgian reporter with expulsion News Receive email alerts June 8, 2021 Find out more News Organisation “We’ll hold Ilham Aliyev personally responsible if anything happens to this blogger in France” RSF sayslast_img read more

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first_imgNews Reporters Without Borders today urged Commonwealth heads of government to see that people killing journalists because of their work were duly punished, so the Commonwealth could become “a true home of democracy and freedom.” It noted that 15 journalists had been killed in member-states Bangladesh, Gambia, India, Pakistan, Sierra Leone and Sri Lanka since the last summit in December 2003 and that virtually all the killers were still walking free.“The responsibility of the democratic countries meeting at the summit in Malta from 25 to 27 November – especially Britain – is to press leaders of those six states to stop such crimes and to punish them,” the worldwide press free freedom organisation said.“Drastic steps must be urgently taken to penalise member-states that do not make genuine efforts to ensure press freedom and the safety of journalists.”It said Presidents Yahya Jammeh of Gambia and Mahinda Rajapakse of Sri Lanka, as well as Bangladeshi home minister Lutfozzaman Babor, should be criticised by the summit for their “inability or unwillingness to put an end to the impunity enjoyed by those committing crimes against journalists in their countries.” The media is the victim of the greatest violence in Bangladesh, where hundreds of journalists are attacked every year. Six have been killed since the 2003 summit and their killers are still at large. The most recent victim was Gautam Das, 28, correspondent of the daily Dainik Shamokal, who was brutally executed in Faridpur, west of the capital, just a few days ago, on 17 November, after investigating organised crime and abuses by local figures. He was found dead in his office with an arm and both legs broken and with neck injuries. The murder in Gambia of Deyda Hydara, editor of the thrice-weekly paper The Point, has rocked the country’s politics for nearly a year. Hydara, who was also the local correspondent for Reporters Without Borders and the French news agency Agence France-Presse (AFP), was killed as he drove his car on 16 December 2004. He had fiercely criticised two new press laws, approved by parliament just before he died.After two fact-finding missions (December 2004 and April 2005) to Gambia, Reporters Without Borders said his murder, by professional killers, was part of a years-long series of attacks on journalists and others disliked by the government, that involved the same methods and circumstances (unmarked vehicles, prior death threats). It pointed to the country’s National Intelligence Agency (NIA) as the main suspect and found that Hydara had been threatened and spied on by state security services until a few minutes before his murder only a few steps from a police barracks.Four men in Sri Lanka kidnapped Dharmeratnam Sivaram, 46, editor of the news website TamilNet and a columnist in the Daily Mirror newspaper, as he was leaving a bar in Colombo with friends, a few metres from the Bambalapitya police station, on 28 April this year. His body was found next day in the Himbulala neighbourhood, near parliament, with a bullet in his head and signs of a beating. A suspect was arrested in June but little progress has been made since then. Reporters Without Borders has called on the authorities several times to end impunity for the killers of journalists. Two others were murdered last year because of their work.Journalists in Pakistan are the target of generalised violence, especially in South Waziristan. Amir Nawab Khan, cameraman for the broadcast news agency APTN and reporter for the daily The Frontier Post, was killed in an ambush near Wana in February this year along with Allah Noor Wazir, a reporter for the station Khyber TV, the daily paper The Nation and the German news agency DPA. An unknown group claimed responsibility 10 days later. Reporters Without Borders continues to urge the authorities to fully investigate the killings.The murder in Sierra Leone this July of Harry Yansaneh, acting editor of the daily For di People, shocked the local media, and an autopsy showed he had died from the effects of being beaten two months earlier by henchmen of female member of parliament Fatmata Hassan Komeh, who belongs to the ruling party.In India, Veeraboina Yadagini, who had been investigating illegal activities in the south of the country, was stabbed to death in February 2004, probably on the orders of local politicians. November 24, 2005 – Updated on January 25, 2016 15 journalists killed in the Commonwealth in two years Reporters Without Borders today urged Commonwealth heads of government meeting in Malta (25-27 November) to see that people killing journalists were punished. It noted that 15 had been killed in member-states Bangladesh, Gambia, India, Pakistan, Sierra Leone and Sri Lanka since the last summit in December 2003 and that nearly all their killers were still walking free. Organisation RSF_en Help by sharing this informationlast_img read more

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first_img China: Political commentator sentenced to eight months in prison Receive email alerts to go further Organisation RSF_en January 13, 2009 – Updated on January 20, 2016 New online censorship campaign extinguishes last flicker of Olympic torch Reporters Without Borders regards the campaign against Internet porn that China launched on 5 January as just a pretext for reinforcing online censorship. More than 90 websites have so far been blocked, but some of them have no pornographic content. Foreign ministry spokesperson Jian Yu nonetheless insisted today that “China takes a positive and open minded attitude toward the management of the Internet.” “The online Great Wall no longer suffices for the government, which is using porn as a pretext to block websites where people express themselves freely,” Reporters Without Borders said. “Internet users have shown they know how to breach the Great Wall and the government’s persistence proves that it fears the Internet’s appropriation by Chinese citizens.” The press freedom organisation added: “The Olympic torch is now definitely extinguished and the government’s much-vaunted liberalisation is no more. The campaign against political dissidents is now out in the open.” The government began its campaign on 5 January by ordering Google and Baidu, China’s two most popular search engines, to “take more effective measures” to combat online porn. But in practice the campaign is much broader and is also targeting political and human rights content. Amnesty International reported yesterday that its website, which was rendered accessible in China on 1 August, a week before the start of the Beijing Olympic Games, has again been blocked. Brushing aside the allegation, Jian Yu of the foreign ministry said this kind of accusation was made by people who “are ignorant of China’s situation.” Bullog (http://www.bullog.cn), a political blog portal, has been inaccessible since 9 January. The portal’s editor, Luo Yonghao (罗永浩), has posted a note that includes the text of the directive issued by the Beijing Bureau of Information calling for its closure. The directive says: “The www.bullog.cn website is publishing a lot of negative information in the public domain. We already asked it to correct this, but the site has still not taken any effective measures. It is now necessary that the hosting organisation block the domain name – HOLD domain name bullog.cn.” The portal groups some well-known political websites and blogs, some belonging to people such as Ran Yunfei 冉云飞, Baozuitun 饱醉豚, Liao Wendao 梁文道 , Ai Weiwei艾未未, Wang Xiaoshan 王小山, Mo Zhixu 莫之许, Wu Yue San Ren 五岳散人, Shi Nian Kan Chai 十年砍柴 and A Ding 阿丁. all signatories of Charter 8, a manifesto calling for democratic reform inspired by Charter 77, the manifesto issued by Czechoslovak dissidents in 1977. Bullog was already suspended in October 2007, but Luo Yonghao managed to get it reopened by promising the authorities to be “vigilant about site content.” The government meanwhile announced today that it wants to reinforce the state media such as CCTV and the news agency Xinhua. Writing in the Communist Party’s ideological newspaper, which sets the political priorities each year, Propaganda Bureau chief Liu Yunshan said: “It has become urgent for China to ensure that our communication capacity matches our international prestige.” As a result, China is planning to spend 17 billion yuan (2 billion euros) on boosting the influence of these two news media.——-Read Ran Yunfei’s article published in The Guardian News June 2, 2021 Find out more News Help by sharing this information center_img ChinaAsia – Pacific China’s Cyber ​​Censorship Figures News News Democracies need “reciprocity mechanism” to combat propaganda by authoritarian regimes April 27, 2021 Find out more Follow the news on China March 12, 2021 Find out more ChinaAsia – Pacific last_img read more

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first_img November 12, 2020 Find out more Zimbabwean journalist Hopewell Chin’ono denied bail Help by sharing this information RSF_en ZimbabweAfrica April 5, 2007 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Freelance cameraman found dead two days after being kidnapped outside home News to go further Follow the news on Zimbabwe Reporters Without Borders called today for an independent investigation into the death of freelance cameraman Edward Chikomba, a former employee of the state-owned Zimbabwe Broadcasting Holdings (ZBH), who was found dead on 31 March, two days after being kidnapped in Harare by men suspected of being members of the intelligence services.“We are utterly dismayed by this murder, which comes at a critical time for independent journalists because, after years of harassment, they are now being subjected to extreme violence,” Reporters Without Borders said. “This appalling crime must not go unpunished,” the press freedom organisation continued. “As the police do not have the required credibility to conduct a serious investigation, we call on those presidents who still maintain a dialogue with President Robert Mugabe to make him realise that it would be inexplicable and dangerous if those who are responsible for Chikomba’s death are not clearly identified and punished. Only an independent third party is capable of establishing the facts in Zimbabwe today.”Chikomba, who also ran a stall outside his home in the working-class suburb of Glen View, was kidnapped by four men, who stopped and initially asked if they could buy some beverages. Forced at gunpoint to get into their white 4WD vehicle, he was found dead at Darwendale (60 km west of Harare) on 31 March. Since then, his body has been at the morgue in Chinhoyi, 115 km west of the capital.The Zimbabwe Union of Journalists (the leading organisation of its kind in Zimbabwe) quoted one of his relatives as saying he tried to pull Chikomba back as he was being bundled into the vehicle, but the abductors hit him with the butts of their guns. The relative said the vehicle was found at Mapinga, near Banket (80 km west of Harare).One of Chikomba’s former colleagues said Chikomba was accused of providing the international media with video footage showing opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai with his face badly swollen after being beaten while in custody. The same source said Chikomba was a supporter of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).A Harare-based journalist told Reporters Without Borders: “He was undoubtedly targeted because he was known as a cameraman.” After leaving the production team of “Vision 30,” a programme broadcast by ZBH until 2001, Chikomba continued to work as a freelance cameraman for individuals or news organisations.Footage of Tsvangirai with his battered face as he left a courthouse to go to hospital was shot by several news media including Mighty Movies Zimbabwe (Pvt) Ltd, a leading Zimbabwean production company that provided its footage to foreign TV stations and news agencies.Many opposition members, human rights activists and journalists have been arrested by the intelligence services in similar circumstances in recent weeks. Gift Phiri, a contributor to the London-based weekly The Zimbabwean, has been held since 1 April on a charge of practising journalism illegally.Luke Tamborinyoka, the former editor of the now-defunct Daily News, was hospitalised on the orders of a Harare court on 30 March after losing consciousness during his trial. He had been badly injured as a result of mistreatment while in police custody following his arrest along with 34 activists during a police raid on MDC headquarters on 28 March. Receive email alerts News Reports The 2020 pandemic has challenged press freedom in Africa November 27, 2020 Find out more ZimbabweAfrica Reporters Without Borders called today for an independent investigation into the death of freelance cameraman Edward Chikomba, a former employee of the state-owned Zimbabwe Broadcasting Holdings (ZBH), who was found dead on 31 March, two days after being kidnapped in Harare by men suspected of being members of the intelligence services. Organisation News Zimbabwean court must free imprisoned journalist who is unwell September 1, 2020 Find out morelast_img read more

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first_img April 2, 2021 Find out more Organisation TurkeyEurope – Central Asia Condemning abuses Judicial harassmentPredatorsImprisonedFreedom of expressionCouncil of EuropeRSF Prize Receive email alerts Follow the news on Turkey RSF_en RSF_EECA TurkeyEurope – Central Asia Condemning abuses Judicial harassmentPredatorsImprisonedFreedom of expressionCouncil of EuropeRSF Prize Human rights groups warns European leaders before Turkey summit Journalists threatened with imprisonment under Turkey’s terrorism law Credit: Ludovic Marin / AFP As French President Emmanuel Macron prepares to receive a visit from his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) stresses the urgency of defending media freedom in Turkey, where the unprecedented persecution of journalists is a source of destabilization both for Turkey and all of Europe.It will be President Erdoğan’s first visit to France since a bloody coup attempt in July 2016 that plunged his country into an unparalleled spiral of repression. Turkey’s already worrying media situation has become critical since then. Ranked 155th out of 180 countries in RSF’s latest World Press Freedom Index, it is now the world’s biggest prison for professional journalists, while around 150 media outlets have been closed, reducing pluralism to a handful of embattled newspapers.President Macron promised yesterday that he would “in a few days continue to raise with Turkey the situation of journalists who are imprisoned and prevented from practising their profession.”“President Macron, we are counting on you to keep your promise and to firmly request the restoration of pluralism in Turkey and the release of journalists who are unjustly imprisoned,” RSF secretary-general Christophe Deloire said.“President Erdoğan’s strategy of maintaining tension, which electrifies the political climate and prevents a democratic public debate, is fraught with danger both for Turkey and for Europe. It is liable to increase instability and accentuate the deep fracture lines in a very polarized society. It is in no one’s interest to allow Turkey to become so unpredictable.”Most of Turkey’s imprisoned journalists are being held pending the outcome of their trials. Some have already been held for more than a year. They include Ahmet Şık, an investigative reporter who was cut short after speaking for two minutes during his last court appearance and was expelled from the courtroom; Şahin Alpay, a 73-year-old editorialist who has been held for more than 500 days despite having heart problems; and Ahmet Altan, a well-known commentator who is facing the possibility of three jail terms for supposedly sending “subliminal messages” during a TV appearance.Most of the imprisoned journalists are accused of links to terrorist groups or complicity in the coup attempt – charges that carry possible life sentences. But in practice, criticizing the government, working for a “suspect” media outlet, contacting a sensitive source or using an encrypted messaging app are all regarded by the courts as grounds for imprisoning a journalist without having to prove any individual involvement in criminal activity. to go further News April 28, 2021 Find out more News January 4, 2018 Turkish president, about to visit France, must stop crushing media freedom Turkey’s never-ending judicial persecution of former newspaper editor Help by sharing this information News News April 2, 2021 Find out morelast_img read more

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first_img TurkeyEurope – Central Asia Condemning abuses Judicial harassmentImprisonedFreedom of expressionCouncil of Europe News Receive email alerts The trial of 29 journalists resumed today in Istanbul after a one-month break. The release of 21 of them, held since last summer, was blocked at the last minute. Indictments are in the process of being issued against dozens of other detained journalists, heralding more mass trials.In the trial that resumed today, the 29 defendants* are alleged to have constituted the “media wing” of the movement led by the US-based Turkish cleric Fethullah Gülen, who is accused by the authorities of masterminding the abortive coup attempt in July 2016.They are facing up to ten years in prison on a charge of belonging to an illegal organization. Twenty-four of them have been in pre-trial detention for the past eight to nine months.Release of 21 blocked at the last momentAt the end of the first hearing on 31 March, the court ordered the conditional release of 21 of the journalists but this was blocked a few hours later although family members were already waiting outside the prison to receive them.Instead of being released, they were taken into police custody and then imprisoned again as a result of an appeal by the prosecution and new charges. Thirteen of them are now charged with “trying to overthrow the government and constitutional order.” The three judges who ordered their release were suspended on 3 April. Only Ali Akkuş, the former editor of the daily Zaman, was finally released. He remains subject to judicial control.“Turkey’s justice system stops at nothing to keep journalists in detention although they are accused solely in connection with the articles they wrote,” said Johann Bihr, the head of RSF’s Eastern Europe and Central Asia desk.“This persecution and the lack of any proportion between the alleged actions and the requested sentences highlight the political nature of these trials. We reiterate our call for the immediate release of all journalists who are being held without evidence of a direct, personal involvement in the coup attempt.”Editorial policies and a few tweets on trialThe first hearing, which was observed by RSF’s Turkey representative Erol Önderoğlu, was marked by many irregularities. All the journalists denied the accusations brought against them. In essence, the prosecution is accusing them of having worked for media outlets sympathetic to the Gülen movement, including Zaman, Meydan, Bugün, Millet, Haberdar, Habertürk and Samanyolu Haber.Most of the prosecution evidence consists of articles and posts that criticized President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s administration, covered corruption allegations against the government, or criticized the witchhunt targeting Gülen supporters.In the prosecution’s eyes, all these articles were published as a result of a public relations operation orchestrated by the Gülen movement with the aim of destabilizing the government and paving the way for the coup. But there is no evidence of any actual orchestration.The discussion in court has focussed mainly on the political views of the defendants. The columnist Murat Aksoy testified that he initially supported the ruling AKP party’s reformist policies but began to criticize its new foreign policy and its growing conservatism in 2011.“I just wrote in order to contribute to democracy,” Aksoy told the court. “Are you criticizing what I wrote or the media outlets I wrote for?”“If I’d known that we were living in a banana republic, I would not have criticized the president on Twitter,” fellow defendant Atilla Taş said. “I did my military service (…) and I’ve kept a bullet in my leg as a souvenir for the past 25 years. And yet today I am accused of terrorism.”Abdullah Kılıç, HaberTürk TV’s former news director, gave the court examples of editorials in which he supported President Erdoğan and criticized the Gülen movement. Ali Akkuş recalled that he defended Erdoğan when he was imprisoned for reading a poem in 1999.Gökçe Fırat, an editorialist for the weekly Türk Solu and leader of the Ulusal party, pointed to the ideological incompatibility between his left-wing nationalist views and the views of the Gülen movement. Former Zaman reporter Habip Güler pointed out that he took part in protests against the July 2016 coup attempt.Several defendants said they had accounts with the Gülen movement-affiliated bank Asya solely because those accounts had been set up for them to receive their monthly salary deposits.Another spate of indictmentsIn a separate case, the prosecution finally submitted a document to the court on 17 April indicting Ahmet Altan, Mehmet Altan and Nazlı Ilıcak, three well-known journalists who have been in pre-trial detention since last summer.They are each facing three life sentences on charges of “trying to overthrow the government” because comments they made in a TV studio broadcast on the eve of the coup attempt allegedly contained “insinuations linked to the coup d’état.”The same sentence was requested for 30 former Zaman employees in an indictment issued on 11 April. Twenty-one of them, including Şahin Alpay, Ali Bulaç, Ahmet Turan Alkan and Mümtazer Türköne , have been in pre-trial detention since July 2016. Their trial is due to start in the next few months.Nineteen employees of the daily Cumhuriyet, including 11 who are in pre-trial detention, are facing up to 43 years in prison on charges of belonging to an illegal organization or assisting it. Their trial will open on 24 July.The already disturbing media situation in Turkey, which is ranked 155th out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2017 World Press Freedom Index, has become critical under the state of emergency declared in the wake of the July 2016 coup attempt.Around 150 media outlets have been liquidated by decree and more than 100 journalists are currently detained. At least 775 press cards and hundreds of journalists’ passports have been cancelled without any judicial proceedings. And censorship of the Internet and online social networks has reached unprecedented levels. Human rights groups warns European leaders before Turkey summit to go further Follow the news on Turkey News Turkey’s never-ending judicial persecution of former newspaper editor RSF_en April 2, 2021 Find out more TurkeyEurope – Central Asia Condemning abuses Judicial harassmentImprisonedFreedom of expressionCouncil of Europe News Help by sharing this information *The 29 journalists whose trial resumed today are Abdullah Kılıç, Ahmet Memiş, Ali Akkuş, Atilla Taş, Bayram Kaya , Bülent Ceyhan, Bünyamin Köseli, Cemal Azmi Kalyoncu, Cihan Acar, Cuma Ulus, Davut Aydın, Emre Soncan, Gökçe Fırat Çulhaoğlu, Habib Güler, Halil İbrahim Balta, Hanım Büşra Erdal, Hüseyin Aydın, Muhammed Sait Kuloğlu, Muhterem Tanık, Murat Aksoy, Mustafa Erkan Acar, Mutlu Çölgeçen, Oğuz Usluer, Seyid Kılıç, Ufuk Şanlı, Ünal Tanık, Yakup Çetin, Yetkin Yıldız and Said Sefa (who is on the run). News Journalists threatened with imprisonment under Turkey’s terrorism law Organisation April 28, 2021 Find out more April 27, 2017 Trial of 29 Turkish journalists resumes, more mass trials on their way April 2, 2021 Find out morelast_img read more

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first_img Receive email alerts July 24, 2014 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Seven-year jail term for Saudi photographer News Saudi ArabiaMiddle East – North Africa Saudi ArabiaMiddle East – North Africa to go further April 28, 2021 Find out more RSF joins Middle East and North Africa coalition to combat digital surveillance News News Help by sharing this information News Follow the news on Saudi Arabia Saudi media silent on RSF complaint against MBS “As Safar was convicted and sentenced for providing information, we call for his immediate and unconditional release and the quashing for his conviction,” said Reporters Without Borders assistant research director Virginie Dangles. “We are extremely concerned to see so many Saudi news and information providers being convicted and given very severe sentences. This violates Saudi Arabia’s international obligations.”Other recent victims of the crackdown include Waleed Abu Al-Khair, the founder of the Monitor of Human Rights in Saudi Arabia (MHRSA). A Riyadh court sentenced him on 6 July to 15 years in jail on charges of “preparing, storing and transmitting information that undermines public order,” inciting rebellion”, “publishing false information with the aim of harming the state, contempt of court” “and creating an NGO without permission”.According to Gulf Centre for Human Rights, Khair has also been the victim of mistreatment since his arrest.Well-known writer Mukhlif Al-Shammari’s five-year jail term was upheld on second appeal on 3 July. His sentence also includes a ban on writing for newspapers or websites or appearing in the media, and a ten-year ban on travelling abroad.Fawzan Al-Harbi, one of the founders of the Arabian Civil and Political Rights Association (ACPRA), which monitors human rights violations in Saudi Arabia, was sentenced on 25 June to seven years in prison and a seven-year ban on foreign travel. The charges on which he was convicted included “preparing, storing and transmitting information that undermines public order” under cyber-crime law. Reporters Without Borders condemns the seven-year jail term that a Jeddah criminal court specializing in national security and terrorism passed on independent news photographer Jassim Mekki A’al Safar on 18 June. He was also sentenced to a seven-year ban on foreign travel after his release. Safar was accused of “posting photos and videos on YouTube that could discredit the kingdom,” “posting photos of prisoners in public places,” “creating a terrorist cell,” “chanting anti-government slogans at protests” and “meeting with foreign reporters.”He was one of a total of 11 activists who were given sentences ranging from four to 19 years in prison on 18 June on charges that including sedition and “demonstrating.” The sentencing ending a trial that began on 26 November. Three of the years that made up Safar’s seven-year term were imposed under the March 2007 cyber-crime law. RSF_en Organisation NSO Group hasn’t kept its promises on human rights, RSF and other NGOs say According to the Arabic Network For Human Rights Information, Safar told the judge during the trial that he had been tortured and mistreated since his arrest, but the judge rejected his claims. Latest in a recent series of long jail terms for independent information providers June 8, 2021 Find out more March 9, 2021 Find out morelast_img read more

June 12, 2021 | |Post a Comment

first_img Google experiments drop Australian media from search results Receive email alerts AustraliaAsia – Pacific News Follow the news on Australia February 22, 2021 Find out more AustraliaAsia – Pacific November 19, 2020 Find out more RSF_en RSF condemns Facebook’s blocking of journalistic content in Australia September 8, 2006 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Call for overhaul of freedom of information laws after disappointing decision by High Courtcenter_img Organisation News Help by sharing this information January 21, 2021 Find out more Reporters Without Borders today called on Australia’s government and parliament to urgently amend its laws on the right and access to information in order to better protect press freedom after a high court ruling confirmed the extent to which these rights and freedoms are curtailed.”It is regrettable in a democracy that a government can so easily reject a journalist’s request for access to information that is in the public interest,” the press freedom organisation said. “It is even more regrettable that the courts uphold the government’s ability to evade the need for transparency.”Reporters Without Borders added that it was supporting calls from the Australian Press Council and the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance for an overhaul of the existing legislation.In a three-to-two majority decision, the high court of Australia ruled on 6 September that the treasury department was right not to supply The Australian daily newspaper with the information about income tax which the newspaper’s freedom of information editor, Michael McKinnon, requested a few years ago under the 2002 Freedom of Information Act.The authorities are empowered under the access to information laws to reject a request from a news organisation if they considered it is against “the public interest.” The treasury minister twice blocked McKinnon’s request for documents relating to tax policy.The Australian Press Council said the high court’s decision would give the authorities a “fresh impetus to suppress information that is embarrassing or politically inconvenient.” The Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance said the existing legislation “provided several barriers for journalists seeking access to non-personal information.” to go further News On eve of the G20 Riyadh summit, RSF calls for public support to secure the release of jailed journalists in Saudi Arabia Newslast_img read more

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first_img News June 8, 2021 Find out more Follow the news on Europe – Central Asia RSF June 7, 2021 Find out more “Ineffective regulation of surveillance technology leads to massive harm to freedom of expression and other human rights. The EU must act now and ensure transparency and accountability within this industry”, added Christian Mihr. A lack of transparency regarding licences granted and denied and the manufacturers and end users involved further undermines effective oversight of this global trade by researchers and civil society actors. As part of an international civil society coalition, RSF has repeatedly called on EU institutions to strengthen the regulatory framework on export controls of surveillance technology and to include meaningful human rights safeguards within the current European reform of dual use goods. RSF included FinFisher in its list of press freedom’s 20 digital predators in 2020. Respect judicial independence in cases of two leading journalists in Serbia and Montenegro, RSF says GermanyFranceItalyTurkeyMyanmarBahrainUnited Arab EmiratesEgyptEurope – Central AsiaAsia – PacificMiddle East – North Africa Protecting journalistsOnline freedomsProtecting sources InternetFreedom of expression Organisation Reporters Without Borders (RSF) welcomes news of significant progress in the criminal investigation of illegal exports of surveillance technology by German spyware company FinFisher. Over the past decade, spyware from European companies such as FinFisher (Germany), Hacking Team / Memento Labs (Italy) or Amesys (France) has appeared in authoritarian states including Myanmar, Turkey, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates. Most recently, Amnesty International found further evidence of the use of FinSpy software by a hacking group in Egypt. Digital surveillance in these states is often followed by arrests, torture, and other serious human rights violations. “For far too long, FinFisher and other European spyware manufacturers have shrouded themselves in obscure company structures to avoid any legal responsibility for the human rights violations, which they facilitate”, said Christian Mihr, executive director of RSF Germany. “A successful prosecution of FinFisher’s executive directors would send an important and overdue signal that these companies must no longer act outside of the law and without care for their due diligence obligations.” GermanyFranceItalyTurkeyMyanmarBahrainUnited Arab EmiratesEgyptEurope – Central AsiaAsia – PacificMiddle East – North Africa Protecting journalistsOnline freedomsProtecting sources InternetFreedom of expression center_img News Receive email alerts Public prosecutors have searched about a dozen offices belonging to the Munich-based spyware manufacturer, public broadcasting news Tagesschau revealed early on Wednesday, following criminal charges that RSF Germany and other civil society organizations filed against the FinFisher conglomerate in 2019, based on indications that it had illegally sold and exported its FinSpy intrusion software to the Turkish government. The search marks an important development in RSF’s international efforts to stop an out-of-control trade in surveillance technology that threatens the rights of journalists worldwide. “We’ll hold Ilham Aliyev personally responsible if anything happens to this blogger in France” RSF says October 14, 2020 German spyware company FinFisher searched by public prosecutors RSF calls for a fully transparent investigation after mine kills two journalists in Azerbaijan News News In summer 2017, FinSpy was detected on a webpage disguised as a mobilization website of the Turkish opposition movement from where it was downloaded and likely used to monitor political activists and journalists. RSF Germany filed criminal charges against the executive directors of FinFisher GmbH, Finfisher Labs GmbH and Elaman GmbH, all part of the FinFisher conglomerate, in July 2019. Public prosecutors subsequently opened an investigation into a possible violation of the German foreign trade law, which was amended in 2015 to include national licencing obligations of certain surveillance products. Breaches of the law are punishable with up to five years in prison or a financial penalty. RSF_en to go further Help by sharing this information June 4, 2021 Find out morelast_img read more