Letters

2011

Letters   |   Ecuador

Referendum threatens press freedom in Ecuador

President Correa: With a referendum approaching that may restrict news content and weaken news media companies, we are deeply concerned about Ecuador's commitment to freedom of expression. The vote, scheduled for May 7, will ask Ecuadorans several questions on a range of issues. The 10-point ballot includes, among other things, creation of a council to regulate media content and a prohibition against media companies having holdings in other industries.

April 18, 2011 11:35 AM ET

Letters   |   Burundi

Burundi must free Kavumbagu, halt flawed prosecution

Dear Justice Minister Ancilla Ntakaburimvo: We urge you to intervene in the case of Jean-Claude Kavumbagu, editor of the news website NetPress who has been improperly imprisoned since July 17, 2010, on a charge of treason. We call on you to urge the state prosecutor to drop the pending charge against Kavumbagu and secure his release.

April 11, 2011 11:58 AM ET

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Letters   |   Gambia

In Gambia, Jammeh asked to clarify Manneh's 'death'

Dear President Jammeh: We request clarification of your March 16 comments suggesting "Chief" Ebrima Manneh, a reporter for the Daily Observer, may have died. Manneh disappeared after witnesses saw him being arrested by state security agents in the offices of the Daily Observer on July 7, 2007. The government has previously denied any knowledge of Manneh's fate.

March 21, 2011 3:50 PM ET

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Letters   |   Ukraine

CPJ concerned by irregularities in Ukraine's Gongadze case

Dear President Yanukovych: The Committee to Protect Journalists is deeply concerned by reports of irregularities in the decade-long investigation into the 2000 kidnapping and murder of Internet journalist Georgy Gongadze. Particularly, CPJ is disturbed by efforts to derail progress in the investigation and peg the ultimate responsibility for the murder on a dead suspect, while other leads in the case languish. Since assuming office in March, you have publicly stated your commitment to press freedom in Ukraine. The case of Georgy Gongadze is a litmus test for you and your administration, and we urge you to ensure that none of the perpetrators of his kidnapping and killing are allowed to walk free.

March 1, 2011 4:29 PM ET

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Letters   |   Cuba, Spain

Press Cuba to keep promise to free journalists

Dear President Rodríguez Zapatero: The Committee to Protect Journalists is alarmed that the Cuban government has yet to fulfill its promise to free all journalists imprisoned during the 2003 crackdown on dissent. We urge your government, which was a key party to the agreement to release the prisoners by November 2010, to hold President Raúl Castro to his word.

Letters   |   Uzbekistan

EU should press Uzbekistan on news media crisis

Dear President Barroso: We're writing in advance of your January 24 meeting in Brussels with Uzbek President Islam Karimov to urge you to raise Uzbekistan's grave press freedom conditions and to make clear to Karimov that any improvement of the country's relationship with Europe is dependent on him taking steps to fix the press freedom crisis. The European Union made clear it is committed to human rights in Central Asia in its 2009 plan, "The European Union and Central Asia: The New Partnership in Action."

January 19, 2011 4:52 PM ET

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Letters   |   Saudi Arabia

Saudi online media regulations alarmingly restrictive

Dear Minister al-Khuja: The Committee to Protect Journalists is deeply concerned about new regulations for online media you issued on January 1. The rules contain several provisions that can be used to restrict coverage. The provisions are vaguely worded, contain numerous loopholes, and grant the Ministry of Culture and Information blanket powers without providing online media protection against abuse. Most alarmingly, the new regulations would also subject online media to the kingdom's already existing highly repressive press law.

January 14, 2011 10:41 AM ET

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Letters   |   China, USA

CPJ asks Obama to raise jailed Chinese journalists with Hu

Dear President Obama: The Committee to Protect Journalists is writing to you in advance of Chinese President Hu Jintao's visit to the United States in January to urge you to raise press freedom issues during your talks. We ask that you make clear the depth of U.S. concern that China is the world's leading jailer of journalists.

January 11, 2011 4:46 PM ET

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Letters   |   Hungary

Hungary must repeal repressive new media law

Dear Prime Minister Orban: The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on you to work toward the immediate repeal of Hungary's new, severely restrictive media law. "On Media Services and Mass Media," better known as the Media Act, was approved by the Hungarian parliament on December 21 and signed by President Pal Schmitt on December 30, despite domestic and international alarm at the potentially devastating effect on press freedom. The measure came into force on January 1, the same day Hungary assumed the rotating European Union presidency, sending the very damaging message that Hungary is seeking to nullify citizens' internationally recognized rights to free expression and access to information.

Letters   |   Tunisia

Tunisia must end censorship on coverage of unrest

Dear President Ben Ali: The Committee to Protect Journalists is disturbed by your government's attempt to censor coverage of recent protests against unemployment and corruption in Tunisia. We are specifically alarmed by the confiscation of two opposition weeklies, the government's denunciation of Al-Jazeera, the systematic obstruction of reporting and broadcasting, as well as the blocking of news websites that are covering the protests. We call on your government to bring to an immediate end to its efforts to curtail independent reporting and to reverse course on the restrictions in place since mid-December.

January 5, 2011 12:27 PM ET

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