January 2016

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CPJ Newsletter: January

January 30, 2016 12:00 PM ET

Turkey releases jailed Iraqi journalist Following months of advocacy by VICE News, CPJ, and other groups, Iraqi journalist Mohammed Ismael Rasool was released from Turkish prison on January 5. Rasool was arrested in August along with his VICE News colleagues, Jake Hanrahan and Philip Pendlebury, while they were reporting from...

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Burundi arrests two foreign correspondents in wider crackdown

January 29, 2016 4:49 PM ET

New York, January 29, 2016--The Committee to Protect Journalists today called on authorities in Burundi to stop harassing journalists and allow them to freely report on events in the country. At least three journalists have been briefly detained in the past two days....

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Jailed Chinese journalist Gao Yu released early on medical parole

January 29, 2016 12:24 PM ET

Gao Yu, a veteran Chinese journalist and contributor to German broadcaster Deutsche Welle, was released on medical parole on November 26, 2015, after being imprisoned for more than 580 days, according to news reports....

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Chinese journalist held on extortion charges

January 28, 2016 6:11 PM ET

New York, January 28, 2016--Chinese authorities should immediately release Zhang Yongsheng, a reporter for the state-owned Lanzhou Morning Herald, who has been imprisoned since January 7, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. On Monday, authorities accused Zhang of extortion....

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A man listens to the news on the radio in Kampala, August 16, 2003 (Reuters).

Uganda forces radio station off the air ahead of elections

January 28, 2016 10:21 AM ET

New York, January 28, 2016 -- Ugandan regulators should immediately allow the privately owned radio station Endigyito FM to resume broadcasts, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today....

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Turkish journalists protest the arrest of their colleagues Can Dündar and Erdem Gül

Jailed Turkish journalists face multiple life sentences

January 27, 2016 4:02 PM ET

New York, January 27, 2016 -- Turkish prosecutors should immediately drop all charges against Can Dündar and Erdem Gül, journalists at the daily newspaper Cumhuriyet, and release them without delay, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today....

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Venezuela's national assembly reopens to the press after five-year ban

January 27, 2016 2:48 PM ET

When security guards opened the doors to Venezuela's colonial-era National Assembly building last Wednesday, I was among the dozens of reporters who swarmed inside. Even though the day's legislative session would not be called to order for another three hours, every seat in the press galley, located on the...

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Critical reporter shot dead in Oaxaca, Mexico

January 26, 2016 12:26 PM ET

Mexico City, January 26, 2016--The Committee to Protect Journalists urges Mexican authorities to investigate the murder of Marcos Hernández Bautista, including the possibility that he was killed for his work as a journalist, find all those responsible, and bring them to justice....

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As editor-informant Li Xin disappears, journalists share their experiences with China's security services

January 25, 2016 5:39 PM ET

The case of Li Xin, a journalist who disappeared in Thailand in January after telling the international press in November he had fled China after being forced to work for years as a government informant, has shed light on the pressures some journalists face to provide information to the...

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Kenya detains blogger for two days

January 25, 2016 12:55 PM ET

Kenyan police arrested freelance journalist and blogger Yassin Juma on January 23, after he used social media to post photos of the aftermath of a deadly, January 15, Al-Shabaab attack on an African Union military base in Somalia, according to press reports....

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South Korean court finds blogger guilty of blogging positively about North Korea

January 22, 2016 1:54 PM ET

New York, January 22--The Seoul Western District Court on January 21 found a 73-year-old, South Korean journalist guilty of blogging positively about North Korea and handed him a one-year suspended prison sentence, according to news reports. The court acquitted the journalist, identified only by his surname Lee in the South...

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Three journalists face military trial in Cameroon

January 21, 2016 6:01 PM ET

New York, January 21, 2016-- The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Cameroonian authorities to drop all charges against three journalists for failing to disclose information to the state. The three are scheduled to stand trial before a military court on Friday....

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How U.S. copyright law is being used to take down Correa's critics in Ecuador

January 21, 2016 3:41 PM ET

On December 30, César Ricaurte, the executive director of Fundamedios, received a copyright complaint with the potential to close his entire website. The complaint, filed on behalf of Ecuador's communications regulator SECOM by a company called Ares Rights, ordered the independent press freedom group to remove an image of President...

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A home is damaged by fighting in the Yemeni city of Taiz, May 25, 2015 (Reuters).

Two journalists missing, believed abducted in Yemen

January 21, 2016 2:57 PM ET

New York, January 21, 2016 - Two journalists and a driver have gone missing and are believed to have been abducted in the Yemeni city of Taiz, their respective employers reported today. The Committee to Protect Journalists calls for their immediate release and for anyone with information on their...

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Tanzania imposes permanent ban on weekly newspaper

January 21, 2016 1:53 PM ET

New York, January 21, 2016--The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on authorities in Tanzania to end their harassment of the weekly newspaper Mawio. The Kiswahili-language newspaper was permanently banned from publishing in print and online Friday and two of its editors were briefly detained, according to reports....

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CPJ urges Putin to ensure Chechen officials cease harassing journalists

January 21, 2016 1:09 PM ET

The Committee to Protect Journalists writes to Russian President Vladimir Putin to express its deep concern at the menacing language employed on social media and in the press by officials in Chechnya against critical journalists and rights activists.

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CPJ condemns attack on Tolo TV employees in Afghanistan

January 20, 2016 12:48 PM ET

New York, January 20, 2016--A suicide bombing in Kabul today killed seven employees from the Afghan station Tolo TV, according to news reports and the station. The attack on staff returning from work at the privately owned station injured 27 others, including 26 staff, according to Tolo TV. No...

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Coalition calls for release of two journalists in Chhattisgarh, India

January 19, 2016 6:00 PM ET

A coalition of free expression and human rights advocacy groups led by the Committee to Protect Journalists wrote to Chief Minister Raman Singh of Chhattisgarh to ask him to intervene to ensure that police and prosecutors swiftly release journalists Somaru Nag and Santosh Yadav.

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We're live from Taipei! Please don't tell China's censors

January 19, 2016 4:33 PM ET

Typically, news organizations like to promote original reporting. When an outlet covers a breaking news event at the time and from the place where the event is happening, they want their audience to know. However, for Chinese commercial media that covered this weekend's presidential election in Taiwan, this was...

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Freelance journalist killed by Saudi coalition airstrike in Yemen

January 19, 2016 3:54 PM ET

New York, January 19, 2016--The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns the killing of Almigdad Mojalli. The Yemeni freelance journalist was killed by a Saudi-led coalition airstrike outside the capital of Sanaa on Sunday morning while on assignment for Voice of America, the outlet reported this weekend....

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Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian is free, Iran news outlet says

January 16, 2016 11:12 AM ET

EDITOR'S NOTE: This alert was updated at 01:23 p.m. Saturday to reflect U.S. officials confirming Jason Rezaian has been freed. New York, January 16, 2016--The Committee to Protect Journalists welcomes the release today of Washington Post correspondent Jason Rezaian, who spent 544 days in prison in Iran. Rezaian was freed...

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Press trying to cover politics in Uganda face restrictions, attacks

January 15, 2016 4:37 PM ET

January 15, 2016--The Committee to Protect Journalists is concerned that journalists in Uganda are being prevented from freely covering Parliament and campaigning for next month's presidential elections. The government announced this week that journalists without a university qualification will be barred from covering parliament, according to local reports. Journalists have...

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Journalists arrested without charge in Djibouti

January 15, 2016 11:18 AM ET

New York, January 15, 2016 - Officials in Djibouti should immediately release two journalists arrested this week, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Police arrested Kadar Abdi Ibrahim on Thursday, and arrested Mohamed Ibrahim Waiss on Monday, but have yet to charge either, according to the Facebook page of...

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Egypt sentences journalists to prison for 'publishing false news'

January 13, 2016 6:30 PM ET

New York, January 13, 2016 -- The Committee to Protect Journalists on Wednesday condemned a Cairo court's sentencing of three journalists and one press freedom advocate to three years in prison each on charges of "publishing false news" and belonging to the banned Muslim Brotherhood group....

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CPJ condemns grenade attack on offices of Pakistani broadcaster

January 13, 2016 11:42 AM ET

New York, January 13, 2016--The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns a grenade attack on the Islamabad offices of Pakistani broadcaster ARY News today. A video editor, Umar Hayat, was wounded in the attack, and windows at the front of the building were damaged when two men on motorcycles threw...

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Two Kurdish journalists jailed in southeast Turkey

January 12, 2016 4:58 PM ET

Istanbul, January 12, 2016--Turkish authorities should immediately release two Kurdish journalists jailed in southeast Turkey since last week and drop all charges against them, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. The arrests follow the detentions of at least three other journalists working for pro-Kurdish news outlets in December....

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Unknown gunmen kill two Iraqi journalists

January 12, 2016 3:52 PM ET

New York, January 12, 2016--Unknown gunmen shot to death two journalists working for the independent Al-Sharqiya TV station in Iraq today, according to the channel and news reports. The attack marks the first killings of journalists to be documented by the Committee to Protect Journalists in 2016....

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Kenyan journalist arrested

January 12, 2016 3:06 PM ET

Kenyan police arrested journalist Elijah Kinyanjui Maina in the town of Nakuru, roughly 160 kilometres (99 miles) northwest of Nairobi, on January 12, 2016, and released him that evening, according to news reports. Maina is managing editor of the website Nakuru County News, which focuses on local news....

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Indonesia denies media visa for France 24 reporter

January 12, 2016 2:46 PM ET

Bangkok, January 12, 2016 - The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns Indonesia's refusal to issue a media visa to French journalist Cyril Payen. The Bangkok-based senior reporter for France 24 television received notice of the denial from Indonesia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs without explanation on Friday, he told CPJ....

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Iran arrests journalists, bans newspaper ahead of elections

January 11, 2016 6:32 PM ET

New York, January 11, 2016--Iranian authorities should immediately release Farzad Pourmoradi, Meysam Mohammadi, and all journalists detained for their work, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Authorities should furthermore lift the ban on the daily newspaper Bahar, CPJ said. The arrests and the ban on the newspaper come ahead...

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For journalists fleeing Islamic State, Turkey 'is as dangerous as Syria'

January 11, 2016 6:28 PM ET

For the past two years, activists and journalists seeking refuge from Islamic State repression in Raqqa would take sanctuary across the border in southern Turkey, setting up safe houses and offices, and darting back to Syria regularly with camera equipment and other vital supplies. But that sanctuary is now...

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Ugandan editors arrested for refusing to reveal a source

January 8, 2016 4:16 PM ET

Ugandan police on January 8, 2016, released two Ugandan editors after holding them without contact with the outside world for 24 hours for failing to reveal the source for a photograph published in their respective publications....

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South Sudan arrests journalist, newspaper ceases publishing

January 7, 2016 6:01 PM ET

New York, January 7, 2016---South Sudanese authorities should immediately release journalist Joseph Afandi, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. The editor of the newspaper where Afandi worked resigned after Afandi's arrest, and the newspaper has not published since....

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'They wanted me to say I was wrong': Freed Ethiopian journalist on why 1,500 days in jail failed to silence her

January 7, 2016 3:24 PM ET

Reeyot Alemu, an Ethiopian journalist who worked for the independent weekly Feteh, spent almost 1,500 days in prison after being arrested in June 2011 and charged with terrorism in 2012. She was released unexpectedly in July....

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Will the EU's actions speak louder than its words on Poland's new media law?

January 7, 2016 2:21 PM ET

On January 13, the European Commission--the so-called guardian of EU treaties--will meet in Brussels to debate a troubling law passed in Poland today that, according to reports, paves the way for the government to take control of public service TV and radio....

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Bahrain accuses journalist of supporting terrorism

January 6, 2016 6:41 PM ET

New York, January 6, 2016--Bahraini authorities should immediately release journalist Mahmoud al-Jaziri and drop all charges against him, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. The terrorism charges were announced amid escalating sectarian tensions in Bahrain and other Gulf countries....

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One year after Charlie Hebdo, will press freedom become victim of war on terror?

January 6, 2016 3:37 PM ET

Who would have thought that France would top the list of most deadly countries for the press in 2015, second only to Syria? The massacre of eight cartoonists and journalists by Islamic militants at the Paris office of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo last January was one of the...

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Somalia intelligence agency detains journalist for weeks

January 6, 2016 2:42 PM ET

New York, January 6, 2016--Somali authorities should immediately release journalist Abdirisak Omar Ahmed or disclose any charges against him, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today....

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Egypt detains two journalists, sentences another already detained

January 5, 2016 4:57 PM ET

New York, January 5, 2016 - Egyptian authorities should immediately release journalist Mahmoud al-Sakka, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. The arrest comes amid a series of repressive measures ahead of the anniversary of the January 25, 2011, uprising that forced former President Hosni Mubarak to resign....

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Turkey releases VICE News journalist Mohammed Ismael Rasool on bail

January 5, 2016 11:58 AM ET

New York, January 5, 2016--The Committee to Protect Journalists welcomes the release on bail today of VICE News journalist Mohammed Ismael Rasool, and calls on authorities in Turkey to drop the terrorism charges he faces. Rasool, who was arrested in August, is banned from leaving Turkey and must report...

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From Charlie Hebdo in Paris to bloggers in Bangladesh, extremists target press

January 4, 2016 3:00 PM ET

Thursday marks one year since two gunmen burst into the Paris offices of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and opened fire. Over the following year, CPJ documented the deaths of 28 journalists who were killed for their work by Islamic militant groups such as Islamic State and Al-Qaeda. This StoryMap charts...

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