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Blog   |   Bangladesh

Mission Journal: Bangladeshi press reined in as Hasina exerts authority

A 2007 election poster for Bangladesh's Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. Independent journalists in the country say the press is coming under pressure from her government. (AFP/Jewel Samad)

Matiur Rahman Chowdhury has been the host of "Frontline," a popular Bangla-language news show, for five years. Aired live three times a week, the show gained notoriety for bringing politicians, members of civil society, and journalists together to discuss current affairs. Chowdhury distinguished himself from many of his counterparts with his soft-spoken but firm demeanor as he led his guests in substantive discussion, rather than presiding over talking heads trying to drown one another out. At a time when much of the broadcast media in Bangladesh has become muted, talk shows like Chowdhury's were one of the last spaces for critical news coverage.

Blog   |   India, Internet

India's landmark online speech ruling is step toward greater press freedom

Aseem Trivedi speaks to the media after his arrest in 2012. Charges against the cartoonist have been dropped after India overturned part of its Information Technology Act. (Reuters/Danish Siddiqui)

In an historic decision, India's Supreme Court on Tuesday struck down part of a law used to silence criticism and free expression. While this marks a pivotal victory that has been welcomed in many quarters, many challenges remain for press freedom in the country.

Alerts   |   Maldives

Three journalists arrested in Maldives while covering protests

March 26, 2015, New York--Authorities in the Maldives should immediately release three journalists detained this week while covering political demonstrations in the archipelago nation, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today.

Statements   |   India

CPJ welcomes Indian Supreme Court decision protecting online speech

Manila, March 24, 2015--The Committee to Protect Journalists welcomes the judgment by the Indian Supreme Court today that struck down as unconstitutional Section 66A of the country's Information Technology Act. Section 66A criminalized, among other types of speech, the transmission of "grossly offensive" information, as well as information for the purpose of causing "annoyance" or "inconvenience," according to reports. Individuals convicted under the provision faced up to three years in prison. The court held that Section 66A "arbitrarily, excessively and disproportionately invades the right of free speech" and that upholding it would lead to a "total" chilling effect on free expression.

Blog   |   Singapore

Lee Kuan Yew's legacy

What to make of Singapore's first and former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew, who died Monday morning in the city-state? Under the banner of the People's Action Party, Lee held government power for three decades. After stepping away from the prime minister's office in 1990, he held positions of senior minister and later "minister mentor" until 2004, when his son, Lee Hsien Loong, became prime minister. Under their rule (and the interregnum of Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong--not a Lee family member, but hand-picked for the role, with the elder Lee looming over his shoulder for 14 years), Singapore emerged from Southeast Asia's post-Second World War tumult as its most successful economy, a combination of authoritarian government, democratic trappings, and free markets that some predict will be the next century's model for growth and stability. And Singapore's media policies are being replicated across much of Southeast Asia.

Alerts   |   Myanmar

Myanmar convicts two journalists on defamation charges

New York, March 19, 2015--Two journalists in Myanmar were convicted of defamation on Wednesday and sentenced to two months in jail, according to news reports. The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns the convictions and calls on authorities in Myanmar to reverse the sentences on appeal.

Case   |   India

Bombs thrown at Indian TV station in Chennai

Assailants threw two homemade bombs at the offices of Puthiya Thalaimurai, an independent Tamil television station in Chennai, the capital city of the Indian state of Tamil Nadu, early on March 12, 2015, according to news reports. No one was injured, and the offices did not suffer any damage.

March 13, 2015 12:55 PM ET

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Alerts   |   Myanmar

Journalists assaulted, detained in Myanmar crackdown

A police officer is seen beating a student protester in Letpadan on Tuesday. Journalists covering the protest were harassed, attacked, and detained by police. (AP/Gemunu Amarasinghe)

Bangkok, March 12, 2015--Journalists covering a security force clampdown on a student protest in central Myanmar on Tuesday were harassed, attacked, and detained by police, according to news reports. The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns the assault on and detention of journalists and calls for the immediate and unconditional release of all reporters in police custody.

Alerts   |   Myanmar

Journalist detained over Facebook post in Myanmar

Bangkok, March 2, 2015--A journalist in Myanmar was detained by police on Friday in connection with a satirical image he posted on Facebook about renewed hostilities between government forces and an ethnic rebel group in the country's northeastern Shan State, according to news reports. Aung Nay Myo was released today without charge, the reports said.

Alerts   |   Bangladesh

Blogger hacked to death, another seriously injured in Bangladesh

Protesters in Dhaka gather around the portrait of Avijit Roy, a blogger who was killed on Thursday. (AP/A.M. Ahad)

February 27, 2015, Mumbai--Bangladeshi authorities should swiftly and thoroughly investigate the murder on Thursday of a blogger in the capital, Dhaka, and ensure the perpetrators are held to account, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Avijit Roy had criticized religious fundamentalism on his blog and had covered secular topics, including free expression.

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