Africa / 2010

Kenyan journalist receives threats for investigating murder

December 22, 2010 3:19 PM ET

New York, December 22, 2010--A Kenyan journalist whose reporting has helped expose and publicize the unsolved 2009 murder of reporter Francis Nyaruri received two anonymous threatening phone calls on Friday warning he could "share Nyaruri's fate," according to local journalists. The Committee to Protect Journalists today called on authorities to thoroughly investigate the threats and...

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After officials are criticized, DRC radio host is arrested

December 21, 2010 4:30 PM ET

New York, December 21, 2010--Authorities should immediately release Congolese radio journalist Robert Shemahamba, who has been held in the eastern city of Uvira since Friday in connection with a political program critical of local officials, the Committee to Protect Journalists said....

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ECOWAS court orders Gambia to pay tortured journalist

December 17, 2010 4:54 PM ET

New York, December 17, 2010--Musa Saidykhan, who was detained for three weeks in 2006 by Gambian state security agents, was tortured and must receive compensation, a West African regional court ruled on Thursday....

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Rwandan adviser must retract accusation against editor

December 16, 2010 3:50 PM ET

New York, December 16, 2010--A senior Rwandan presidential adviser should immediately retract a grave and unsubstantiated public accusation against a journalist, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. ...

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CPJ meets jailed Burundian journalist, calls for his release

December 9, 2010 1:35 PM ET

Bujumbura, December 9, 2010--The Committee to Protect Journalists today called for the release of journalist Jean-Claude Kavumbagu after visiting him in prison in Burundi's capital, Bujumbura. CPJ made the call at a press conference marking the end of a four-day mission to Burundi.CPJ Deputy Director Robert Mahoney and East Africa Consultant...

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Election in dispute, Ivory Coast bans news broadcasts

December 3, 2010 3:07 PM ET

New York, December 3, 2010--Ivorian authorities should immediately lift a ban imposed Thursday on France-based news broadcasters covering the contested presidential election, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today....

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Journalists on the frontlines of press freedom honored

November 24, 2010 1:28 PM ET

New York, November 24, 2010--Outstanding journalists at the forefront of the battle for press freedom in Ethiopia, Iran, Russia, and Venezuela were honored Tuesday evening at the Committee to Protect Journalists' 20th Annual International Press Freedom Awards benefit dinner....

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Zimbabwe detains reporter on criminal defamation charges

November 18, 2010 3:06 PM ET

New York, November, 18, 2010--Reporter Nqobani Ndlovu remained in police custody today despite expectations that he would appear in court on criminal defamation charges, local journalists told CPJ. Police in Zimbabwe's second largest city, Bulawayo, arrested Ndlovu, a reporter for the private weekly Standard, on Wednesday and charged him with...

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In Zimbabwe, arrest warrant against veteran editor

November 11, 2010 3:58 PM ET

New York, November 11, 2010--Zimbabwean police should withdraw an arrest warrant issued last week against exiled editor Wilf Mbanga concerning a 2008 story about the murder of an election official, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today....

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CPJ welcomes release of Puntland journalist

November 8, 2010 6:13 PM ET

New York, November 8, 2010--The Committee to Protect Journalists welcomes the presidential pardon and release today of radio journalist Abdifatah Jama, who was imprisoned in August for airing an interview with an Islamist rebel leader in the semi-autonomous region of Puntland. CPJ had repeatedly called for his release.Jama, deputy director of Horseed Media, had begun serving...

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Malawi government bans weekly tabloid

November 1, 2010 5:22 PM ET

New York, November 1, 2010--The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns a government ban on the publication of Malawian weekly tabloid The Weekend Times today. In a letter dated October 28, the National Archives of Malawi issued an immediate suspension of The Weekend Times on charges of failing to register the paper,...

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Ethiopian journalist jailed without charge since September

October 29, 2010 5:47 PM ET

New York, October 29, 2010--The Committee to Protect Journalists calls upon authorities in Ethiopia's northeastern region of Afar to release a journalist who has been held without charge since September 11....

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Gabon: Civil damages are not a tool for punishment

October 29, 2010 1:20 PM ET

New York, October 29, 2010--The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Gabonese authorities to free a journalist who was jailed on Tuesday for failing to pay exorbitant damages stemming from a 2004 civil libel suit....

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Swaziland prime minister threatens to censor columnists

October 22, 2010 3:52 PM ET

New York, October 22, 2010--The Committee to Protect Journalists is alarmed by a recent statement from Swaziland's Prime Minister, Barnabas Sibusiso Dlamini, announcing his intention to create a law requiring newspaper columnists to seek permission before they write critically about the government....

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In Angola, radio commentator injured in stabbing

October 22, 2010 1:26 PM ET

New York, October 22, 2010--A popular Angolan radio commentator, whose satirical broadcasts have been critical of the government, was injured in a stabbing this morning in the capital city of Luanda, according to local journalists and news reports....

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Attackers lob grenade at Puntland radio station

October 19, 2010 5:38 PM ET

New York, October 19, 2010--A pair of assailants lobbed a grenade Monday evening at Horseed FM, a private radio station broadcasting from the port city of Bossasso, the economic capital of Somalia's semi-autonomous Puntland region, according to local reports. After the grenade exploded, one of the attackers began shooting...

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Somaliland obstructs UK satellite station

October 8, 2010 4:38 PM ET

New York, October 7, 2010--Authorities in Somaliland should immediately lift a suspension order imposed against the UK-based satellite broadcaster Universal TV, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. The order bars the station's correspondents from reporting in the breakaway republic in northern Somalia, Khadar Mahamed, Universal TV senior newscaster and...

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Second journalist killed in three days in Uganda

September 15, 2010 5:28 PM ET

New York, September 15, 2010--Unidentified assailants beat and killed news presenter Dickson Ssentongo Monday morning on his way to work at Prime Radio in Mukono district, central Uganda. Assailants beat Ssentongo with metal bars and dragged him into a nearby cassava field, local journalists told CPJ. He was the...

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Freelance journalist beaten to death in Uganda

September 13, 2010 6:13 PM ET

Nairobi, September 13, 2010--Motorcycle taxi drivers beat freelance journalist Paul Kiggundu to death Saturday evening, local journalists told CPJ. The drivers, commonly known as boda-boda, attacked Kiggundu while he was filming some of them demolishing a house in a town outside of Kalisizio, southwest Uganda....

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Angolan radio presenter gunned down

September 8, 2010 5:37 PM ET

New York, September 8, 2010--Following Sunday's murder in Angola of Alberto Graves Chakussanga, a radio journalist with a station critical of the ruling MPLA government, authorities must conduct a thorough and transparent investigation exploring all possible leads and bring those responsible to justice, the Committee to Protect Journalists said...

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In Puntland, radio journalist fatally stabbed

September 1, 2010 4:33 PM ET

New York, September 1, 2010--Unknown assailants fatally stabbed radio journalist Abdullahi Omar Gedi in the Galkayo district of Puntland, a semi-autonomous region of Somalia, on Tuesday evening. Gedi, 25, had just left work at Radio Daljir when attackers stabbed him repeatedly and left him unconscious, the station's managing partner, Jama...

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Malawian president threatens newspaper closings

August 31, 2010 3:15 PM ET

New York, August 31, 2010--The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns threatening comments made by President Bingu wa Mutharika against Malawian news outlets last week. Mutharika threatened to close newspapers that report critically about his administration after the private weeklies Malawi News and Weekend Nation cited a regional agency's report...

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Uganda strikes down criminal sedition

August 26, 2010 5:32 PM ET

New York, August 26, 2010--The Committee to Protect Journalists welcomes Wednesday's ruling by Uganda's Constitutional Court declaring the country's criminal sedition offense, which has been used to prosecute journalists, unconstitutional....

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Togo bans paper over story on president's half-brother

August 26, 2010 5:13 PM ET

New York, August 26, 2010--The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns Wednesday's ruling by a criminal court judge in Togo to indefinitely ban the distribution of a Benin newspaper that had raised questions about the alleged involvement of a half-brother of President Faure Gnassingbé in drug trafficking....

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Somali journalist killed in Mogadishu crossfire

August 24, 2010 4:33 PM ET

New York, August 24, 2010--Veteran radio journalist Barkhat Awale, at left, was killed by crossfire today in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, according to local journalists and news reports. He is the second journalist killed on duty in Somalia this year, according to CPJ research.    Awale, 60, director of the...

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Assault, vandalism reported at Awramba Times

August 19, 2010 3:37 PM ET

On August 17, 2010, two men barged into the offices of the Awramba Times, the independent Amharic-language weekly in the capital, Addis Ababa, and assaulted Moges Tikuye, a security guard, the paper reported. Tikuye suffered minor injuries. Early the next morning, assailants smashed the windows and doors of the office....

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Puntland editor jailed after airing rebel leader interview

August 16, 2010 4:10 PM ET

New York, August 16, 2010--The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on authorities in the semi-autonomous region of Puntland to immediately release jailed radio journalist Abdifatah Jama, who was sentenced on Saturday to six years in prison on charges related to an interview with Islamic rebel leader Sheikh Mohamed Said Atom....

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In South Africa, legislation would restrict press

August 16, 2010 10:02 AM ET

Dear President Zuma: We are writing to express our concern about legislative proposals that would severely restrict South Africa's independent press corps, which is distinguished for its dynamism and professionalism. We call on you as the head of state and leader of the ruling African National Congress (ANC) to ensure that such proposals are either amended in line with constitutional safeguards for freedom of the press and access to information, or withdrawn altogether in the interest of preserving the transparency, accountability, and democracy gained after apartheid.

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CPJ, partner groups urge UNESCO to pull Obiang prize

August 12, 2010 9:19 AM ET

New York, August 12, 2010--The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization should cancel the Obiang prize at its next session in October 2010, the Committee to Protect Journalists and 95 partner groups said in a letter to UNESCO Executive Board members today....

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In Burundi, 2nd editor arrested in less than a month

August 11, 2010 4:57 PM ET

New York, August 11, 2010--Burundian police on Tuesday arrested Thierry Ndayishimiye, chief editor of the private weekly Arc-en-Ciel, on defamation charges related to a story about alleged government corruption. Ndayishimiye is the second Burundian editor to be jailed in less than a month....

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Ugandan online editor accused of sedition

August 4, 2010 4:45 PM ET

Nairobi, August 4, 2010—Police accused the online editor of The Ugandan Record, Timothy Kalyegira, of sedition Tuesday and searched his house today, Kalyegira told the Committee to Protect Journalists. The Media Offences Department commissioner of police, Simon Kuteesa, interrogated Kalyegira about two online articles that speculated as to whether the Ugandan...

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Congolese journalist under arrest; stations forced off air

July 28, 2010 5:00 PM ET

New York, July 28, 2010—Authorities arrested a journalist on Tuesday on criminal defamation charges in Kinshasa, in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Hours earlier, in an unrelated incident, armed men briefly forced the city’s three main opposition broadcasters off the air, according to local journalists and news reports....

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Judge issues fine, suspension in leaked document case

July 27, 2010 3:19 PM ET

New York, July 27, 2010—An Ivorian judge on Monday ordered the release of three journalists who had been jailed for a story citing a leaked official document, but he imposed a fine and suspension on their newspaper, according to local journalists and news reports. ...

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Swazi prince threatens journalists who ‘write bad things'

July 26, 2010 4:29 PM ET

New York, July 26, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns death threats and outrageous claims made last week by a member of Swaziland’s royal family against local journalists over their critical coverage of the country's leadership....

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Ghana police criminally prosecute journalist over sources

July 23, 2010 5:55 PM ET

New York, July 23, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Ghana’s attorney general to drop prosecution of prominent journalist Ato Kwamena Dadzie under the 1960 criminal code in an attempt to get him to reveal his sources....

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Burundian online journalist faces life in prison for treason

July 19, 2010 5:42 PM ET

New York, July 19, 2010—Burundian authorities’ arrest on Saturday of journalist Jean-Claude Kavumbagu on treason charges over commentary critical of the country’s security forces is alarming, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. He is being held in Mpimba prison in the capital, Bujumbura....

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Ivorian trio charged; ailing reporter on hunger strike

July 16, 2010 3:27 PM ET

New York, July 16, 2010—Three journalists were formally charged today after refusing to reveal to Ivory Coast’s state prosecutor their sources for a corruption story based on a document leaked from the prosecutor’s office. The journalists could face up to 10 years in prison....

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Ivory Coast detains three journalists over sources

July 15, 2010 3:53 PM ET

New York, July 15, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists is alarmed by the arrest of three journalists in Ivory Coast who have been detained since Tuesday, when they refused to disclose sources for an investigative report detailing the results of a government probe into corruption in the coffee and cocoa...

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CPJ mourns death of Cameroon’s Pius Njawé

July 13, 2010 10:08 AM ET

New York, July 13, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists extends its deep condolences to the family and colleagues of Pius Njawé, a pioneering Cameroonian journalist and a press freedom advocate, who was killed in a car accident in the United States on Monday....

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Rwandan editor arrested after criticizing Kagame

July 9, 2010 2:21 PM ET

New York, July 9, 2010—Police in Rwanda arrested the editor of a private newspaper on Thursday in connection with a series of articles critical of the government, according to local journalists. ...

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CPJ, African groups call for press freedom commitment

July 8, 2010 11:20 AM ET

Your Excellencies: As you gather in Paris for festivities that celebrate your nations’ 50 years of independence, we, the undersigned African press freedom advocates petition for your public commitment to a free, vibrant, and self-sustaining press as a cornerstone of the development of francophone Africa in the next five decades.

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Somali government harassing journalists as fighting rages

July 2, 2010 2:48 PM ET

Nairobi, July 2, 2010—Somali government forces have been increasingly harassing independent journalists covering violent fighting in Mogadishu, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today....

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Ethiopian newspaper reports tampering of its mail

June 29, 2010 4:21 PM ET

New York, June 29, 2010—Ethiopia’s postal service should a conduct thorough and transparent investigation into the tampering of mail addressed to the country’s leading critical newspaper, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today.Awramba Times Editor-in-Chief Dawit Kebede said the paper has complained to the Ethiopian Postal Service at least three times since...

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Skepticism greets arrests in Rwandan journalist’s murder

June 29, 2010 4:13 PM ET

New York, June 29, 2010—Authorities in Rwanda announced on Monday the arrest of two individuals in the murder of journalist Jean-Léonard Rugambage, who was shot late Thursday as he drove through the gate to his home in Kigali, according to news reports. The Committee to Protect Journalists expressed skepticism about...

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Editor of censored Rwandan paper is assassinated

June 25, 2010 2:33 PM ET

New York, June 25, 2010—A top editor of an independent Rwandan newspaper that was recently banned by the government was assassinated in front of his home late Thursday, according to local journalists and news reports. An assailant shot Jean-Léonard Rugambage, left, acting editor of Umuvugizi  as he drove through the gate of...

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Editor of censored Rwandan newspaper is slain

June 25, 2010 12:23 PM ET

In response to international media reports that Jean-Léonard Rugambage, the deputy editor of  the suspended independent newspaper Umuvugizi, was shot dead late Thursday in the Rwandan capital of Kigali, the Committee to Protect Journalists released the following statement:...

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Ethiopia expels American journalist reporting in rebel area

June 18, 2010 5:26 PM ET

New York, June 18, 2010—Authorities in Ethiopia expelled an American journalist on Thursday who had been reporting near a rebel area in the east of the Horn of Africa country, according to local journalists....

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Rwanda news Web site blocked after paper suspended

June 11, 2010 4:24 PM ET

New York, June 11, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists called on Rwandan authorities today to provide information as to why the Web site of newspaper Umuvugizi is inaccessible in the run-up to August presidential elections. The state-run Rwanda News Agency reported on June 3 that the Web site of Umuvugizi, a leading private paper known for its critical...

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In Gabon, journalist given suspended prison sentence

June 10, 2010 4:43 PM ET

New York, June 10, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns a suspended prison sentence handed to a journalist this week over an article raising questions about the unsolved murder of a government official....

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In Zambia, Post Editor Fred M’membe sent to prison

June 4, 2010 4:13 PM ET

New York, June 4, 2010—Veteran Zambian Editor Fred M’membe was sent to prison today following his sentencing for contempt of court sparked by an op-ed on the state’s prosecution of a journalist, according to local journalists and news reports....

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Zambia should halt harassment of The Post, M’membe

June 3, 2010 5:28 PM ET

New York, June 3, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Zambian President Rupiah Bwezani Banda and his administration to halt the ongoing harassment of the nation’s leading independent newspaper The Post and its award-winning editor Fred M’membe. On Tuesday, a magistrate in the capital, Lusaka, convicted M'membe on a criminal...

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Israeli forces detain journalists aboard humanitarian flotilla

June 1, 2010 5:55 PM ET

New York, June 1, 2010--Israel should immediately release the journalists it detained along with hundreds of peace activists on Monday after Israeli forces stormed a convoy of ships carrying humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. According to international news reports and CPJ interviews, Israeli...

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Eritrean journalist attacked at public seminar in Houston

May 27, 2010 6:23 PM ET

New York, May 27, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists calls for a thorough investigation into a May 9 attack on an Eritrean expatriate journalist by supporters of Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki at a public event in eastern Texas. The event was advertised locally in printed fliers, and on the pro-government Dehai.org Web...

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Zimbabwe allows independent dailies for 1st time in 7 years

May 27, 2010 5:55 PM ET

New York, May 27, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists hails the Zimbabwe Media Commission’s decision to grant publishing licenses to The Daily News, the long-banned independent newspaper, and a handful of other publications. Commission Chairman Godfrey Majonga announced on Wednesday that the licenses would be issued immediately, marking the first...

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Press freedom groups ask UNESCO to reject Obiang money

May 20, 2010 12:10 PM ET

Dear Director-General Bokova: We, the undersigned freedom of expression organizations, join with the Committee to Protect Journalists to express our grave concern regarding the $3 million donation by Equatorial Guinea President Teodoro Obiang for the administration of an international prize in life sciences. As a leading institution that advocates “empowering people through the free flow of ideas and by access to information and knowledge,” UNESCO should not accept funds from one of Africa’s worst violators of press freedom.

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Soldiers raid Madagascar radio station, assault staff

May 18, 2010 5:41 PM ET

New York, May 18, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on the government of Madagascar to investigate a Saturday raid on the opposition radio station Fréquence Plus that resulted in the arrest of an opposition leader while he was on a live radio program, local journalists told CPJ. The soldiers...

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In Cameroon, CPJ seeks untainted inquiry in Ngota death

May 6, 2010 5:00 PM ET

Dear President Biya: We are alarmed by investigations that appear to be flawed and marred with political interference into the April 22 death in prison of journalist Germain Cyrille Ngota Ngota. We hold Cameroon's government responsible for Ngota's death and the well-being of three other journalists in the custody of the administration. We call on you to address these concerns, along with allegations of torture of journalists by a security agency accountable to your office.

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Somali gunmen kill veteran broadcast reporter

May 5, 2010 4:33 PM ET

New York, May 5, 2010—Three gunmen shot dead veteran broadcast journalist Sheik Nur Mohamed Abkey on Tuesday evening as he was returning home from work at the state-run Radio Mogadishu, local journalists told CPJ. Gunmen abducted Abkey, left, near his residence in Wardhigley, southern Mogadishu, and shot him repeatedly in...

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In Nigeria, 4 journalists receive death threats

April 30, 2010 4:00 PM ET

New York, April 30, 2010—Four journalists who covered the recent dismissal of the electoral commission chairman received anonymous death threats via text message on Wednesday, according to CPJ interviews and news reports. The messages, sent from the same number, said the reporters would meet the fate of three slain Nigerian...

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Two Ethiopian state TV journalists under arrest

April 30, 2010 1:22 PM ET

New York, April 30, 2010—In light of the Ethiopian government’s longstanding practice of jailing journalists on trumped-up criminal charges, the Committee to Protect Journalists is concerned about the detentions last week of two government TV journalists on allegations of misusing state property. CPJ is monitoring the legal proceedings closely....

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Three journalists killed in Nigeria

April 26, 2010 5:39 PM ET

New York, April 26, 2010—Three Nigerian journalists were killed in two separate incidents over the weekend. Muslim rioters killed two reporters working with a local Christian newspaper on Saturday, according to local journalists and news reports. Also on Saturday, court reporter Edo Sule Ugbagwu, at left, from the private daily The Nation was shot...

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Cameroon must investigate jailed editor's death

April 25, 2010 4:07 PM ET

Dear President Biya: Following Thursday’s death of newspaper editor Germain S. Ngota Ngota, whose health deteriorated while he was incarcerated in Kondengui Prison in the capital, Yaoundé, the Committee to Protect Journalists calls on you to launch a public, thorough, and transparent inquiry into the circumstances of his death. We urge you to provide guarantees for the well-being of three other journalists held in Cameroonian prisons and address ongoing abuses—including allegations of state torture—against independent journalists who raise questions about the administration’s performance.

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Jailed journalist dies in Cameroon prison

April 22, 2010 5:19 PM ET

New York, April 22, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists is outraged by today’s death of newspaper editor Germain S. Ngota Ngota, whose health deteriorated while he was incarcerated in Cameroon. The death certificate for Ngota, editor of the private bimonthly Cameroon Express, determined that the journalist died from a lack of medical attention...

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Cameroon responsible for Ngota's death

April 22, 2010 12:49 PM ET

We issued the following statement after weekly Cameroon Express Editor Bibi Ngota died of hypertension Wednesday night while in prison in Cameroon’s capital, Yaounde. Ngota was arrested with two other journalists in February for reporting on an alleged corruption case implicating a presidential advisor....

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Rwanda shuts critical papers in run-up to presidential vote

April 13, 2010 4:39 PM ET

New York, April 13, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns today’s decision by Rwanda’s Media High Council to suspend two independent weeklies just months prior to presidential elections. At a press conference, attended only by state broadcasters and the pro-government radio station Contact FM, the Media High Council announced an...

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Somali insurgents ban BBC

April 9, 2010 3:12 PM ET

New York, April 9, 2010—Al-Shabaab insurgents in Somalia have banned all BBC broadcasts from the areas they control and confiscated the corporation’s FM transmitters and satellite dishes. Local journalists told CPJ that Al-Shabaab issued a statement today announcing the immediate ban, claiming the BBC carried the “agenda of the crusaders” and “opposed...

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South Africa: BBC journalist expelled from press conference

April 9, 2010 2:52 PM ET

New York, April 9, 2010--The Committee to Protect Journalists welcomes the African National Congress (ANC) party's condemnation of the expulsion of BBC journalist Jonah Fisher from a press conference on Thursday. ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema referred to Fisher as a "bastard" after the reporter interrupted him....

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In eastern DRC, soldiers suspected in cameraman’s murder

April 6, 2010 5:07 PM ET

New York, April 6, 2010—Following Monday’s murder of freelance cameraman Patient Chebeya in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Committee to Protect Journalists called for a renewed commitment from the government to solidly investigate and prosecute those who kill journalists.Armed men in military uniforms jumped Chebeya, at left, around...

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Ugandan parliament should reject press bill

April 5, 2010 11:07 AM ET

Dear Mr. Speaker: The Committee to Protect Journalists is deeply concerned about the proposed amendment to the 1995 Ugandan Press and Journalist Act, which is expected to be presented before parliament soon. We believe the bill would severely hamper the operations of newspapers and damage the country’s press freedom credentials.

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At least 5 Ugandan journalists wounded covering protest

March 19, 2010 5:44 PM ET

New York, March 19, 2010—At least five journalists were wounded while covering violent clashes between security personnel and protesters outside the capital, Kampala, on Wednesday. Scores of protestors and mourners came to Kasubi, a Kampala suburb, after a fire of unknown origin destroyed the historically significant royal tombs of the...

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Prime minister says Ethiopia plans to jam VOA broadcasts

March 19, 2010 3:14 PM ET

New York, March 19, 2010—Ethiopia is preparing to jam the Amharic-language broadcasts of the U.S. government-funded Voice of America (VOA), Prime Minister Meles Zenawi declared Thursday in a press briefing with international media correspondents based in the capital, Addis Ababa. ...

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Nigerian reporter assaulted at mass funeral

March 11, 2010 4:52 PM ET

New York, March 11, 2010—An angry crowd of mourners attending a mass funeral in Dogo Nahawa, central Nigeria, assaulted state radio reporter Murtala Sani on Monday. Sani, a reporter for the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria, was assigned to cover the funeral of more than 40 people killed during...

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CPJ alarmed by harassment of journalists in Cameroon

March 11, 2010 3:08 PM ET

Dear President Biya: We are writing to express our alarm at the harassment and abuse of at least a dozen journalists in Cameroon. These reporters each raised questions about your administration’s management of public finances, the progress of an anti-corruption drive dubbed Operation Sparrowhawk, and local government affairs. We call on you to hold members of the administration accountable for using security forces and criminal laws to settle scores with the media. We further urge you to initiate reforms that would refer matters of defamation to civil courts.

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Ethiopia reinstates hefty fines against publishing houses

March 10, 2010 4:29 PM ET

New York, March 10, 2010—The Ethiopian Supreme Court reinstated fines on Monday against four newspaper publishing companies over their coverage of the disputed 2005 national election. The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Ethiopian authorities to end their continuing pursuit of politically motivated charges related to the election....

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Voice of America news broadcasts jammed in Ethiopia

March 4, 2010 5:55 PM ET

New York, March 4, 2010—Voice of America (VOA) reported today that its transmissions to Ethiopia are being electronically jammed. The Ethiopian government denied responsibility....

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Two sports journalists kidnapped in Nigeria

March 2, 2010 5:51 PM ET

New York, March 2, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists is concerned about the safety of two sports journalists, one South African and one Nigerian, who were seized by unidentified gunmen in military uniforms on Monday. The gunmen stopped a bus carrying 21 crew members of M-Net’s SuperSport channel, a South African private satellite television...

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In Zimbabwe, courthouse filming lands journalist in jail

March 1, 2010 5:02 PM ET

New York, March 1, 2010—A Zimbabwean freelance journalist was arrested today for the third time this year—this time for taking footage of prisoners outside a courthouse in the capital, Harare, according to local journalists....

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Ivory Coast’s suspension of France 24 is politicized

February 24, 2010 5:26 PM ET

New York, February 24, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists is concerned about politically motivated censorship in Ivory Coast after authorities banned international French broadcaster France 24 on Monday on bogus allegations of unprofessionalism over coverage of political unrest in the West African nation....

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Three Rwandan journalists sentenced to prison

February 23, 2010 4:50 PM ET

New York, February 23, 2010—Three journalists were sentenced to prison on Monday in Rwanda over a story reporting on an extramarital affair between the mayor of the capital, Kigali, and a government minister, according to local journalists and news reports....

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Al-Shabaab abducts reporter

February 22, 2010 4:12 PM ET

New York, February 22, 2010—Militants from the Al-Qaeda-allied insurgent group Al-Shabaab abducted a reporter in Somalia on Sunday, according to local journalists and news reports....

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CPJ urges Ethiopia's Zenawi to pursue press reforms

February 16, 2010 4:43 PM ET

Mr. Prime Minister: We are writing to draw your attention to conditions that undermine press freedom as guaranteed in Article 29 of the Ethiopian Constitution. We would welcome your leadership in furthering reform by working for the repeal of draconian provisions in recent antiterrorism and media legislation.

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Attacks on the Press 2009: Preface

February 16, 2010 12:58 AM ET

By Fareed Zakaria Toward the end of his 118-day ordeal inside Tehran’s Evin prison, Newsweek reporter Maziar Bahari had a bizarre exchange with his interrogator. Bahari had been held in solitary confinement since his arrest after Iran’s disputed presidential election in June; he had been subjected to near-daily beatings...

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Attacks on the Press 2009: Introduction

February 16, 2010 12:58 AM ET

By Joel Simon Does “name and shame” still work in the Internet age? After all, the massacre of 31 journalists and media workers in the Philippines pushed the 2009 media death toll to the highest level ever recorded by CPJ. The number of journalists in prison also rose, fueled by...

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In African hot spots, journalists forced into exile

February 16, 2010 12:57 AM ET

By Tom Rhodes High numbers of local journalists have fled several African countries in recent years after being assaulted, threatened, or imprisoned, leaving a deep void in professional reporting. The starkest examples are in the Horn of Africa nations of Somalia, Ethiopia, and Eritrea, where dozens of journalists have...

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Attacks on the Press 2009: Democratic Republic of the Congo

February 16, 2010 12:40 AM ET

h7 {float:none;width:auto;height:auto;font-family:sans-serif;font-weight:normal; margins:5px;} Top Developments • RFI removed from FM frequencies; other stations censored.• Hundreds march in nine provinces to protest ongoing threats, violence. Key Statistic 3: Female journalists threatened with “a bullet to the head” after focusing their work on women’s issues. Authorities censored coverage of armed conflict...

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Attacks on the Press 2009: Ethiopia

February 16, 2010 12:37 AM ET

h7 {float:none;width:auto;height:auto;font-family:sans-serif;font-weight:normal; margins:5px;} Top Developments• Terrorism law criminalizes coverage of sensitive topics.• Broadcasting Authority serves as government censor. Key Statistic 4: Journalists jailed as of December 1, 2009. Ahead of national elections scheduled for May 2010, the ruling Ethiopian Peoples’ Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) further curtailed the limited freedom of the...

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Attacks on the Press 2009: Gambia

February 16, 2010 12:36 AM ET

h7 {float:none;width:auto;height:auto;font-family:sans-serif;font-weight:normal; margins:5px;} Top Developments•  Hydara murder unsolved; secrecy surrounds Manneh detention.•  Domestic, international pressure prompts Jammeh to halt crackdown. Key Statistic 6: Journalists jailed for sedition after saying president’s remarks on Hydara case were insensitive. Authorities jailed six journalists after their publications said President Yahya Jammeh had been insensitive in...

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Attacks on the Press 2009: Madagascar

February 16, 2010 12:28 AM ET

h7 {float:none;width:auto;height:auto;font-family:sans-serif;font-weight:normal; margins:5px;} Top Developments• Rival leaders use media empires to pursue political goals.• Partisan attacks target journalists, news outlets. Key Statistic 1: Journalist killed in 2009, the first Malagasy media fatality ever recorded by CPJ. Malagasy journalists faced censorship, threats, and arrest as former president Marc Ravalomanana and...

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Attacks on the Press 2009: Niger

February 16, 2010 12:23 AM ET

h7 {float:none;width:auto;height:auto;font-family:sans-serif;font-weight:normal; margins:5px;} Top Developments• Tandja tightens grip on power, media through constitutional changes.• Journalists reporting on corruption face government reprisals. Key Statistic 3: Years beyond his elected term that Tandja can serve, according to a constitutional change. In an audacious bid to maintain power, President Mamadou Tandja pushed through constitutional...

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Attacks on the Press 2009: Nigeria

February 16, 2010 12:22 AM ET

h7 {float:none;width:auto;height:auto;font-family:sans-serif;font-weight:normal; margins:5px;} Top Developments • Local operatives of the ruling PDP assault journalists with impunity. • Editor slain at his home outside Lagos. Wife pledges to continue his work. Key Statistic 21: National dailies, a number reflecting Nigeria’s robust media climate. With 21 national dailies, 12 television stations,...

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Attacks on the Press 2009: Somalia

February 16, 2010 12:16 AM ET

h7 {float:none;width:auto;height:auto;font-family:sans-serif;font-weight:normal; margins:5px;} Top Developments• Al-Shabaab terrorizes media through violence, threats, censorship.• Many local journalists flee into exile, leaving a void in coverage. Key Statistic9: Journalists killed in direct relation to their work in 2009. Somalia was among the world’s deadliest countries in 2009, surpassing violent hot spots such...

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Attacks on the Press 2009: Uganda

February 16, 2010 12:11 AM ET

h7 {float:none;width:auto;height:auto;font-family:sans-serif;font-weight:normal; margins:5px;} Top Developments• Reporters attacked, harassed during Kampala unrest.• Criminal cases pile up as high court considers constitutional challenge. Key Statistic 22: Criminal cases pending against Andrew Mwenda, a top political editor.Violent protests broke out in Kampala in September when security forces blocked leaders of the traditional kingdom...

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Attacks on the Press 2009: Zambia

February 16, 2010 12:04 AM ET

h7 {float:none;width:auto;height:auto;font-family:sans-serif;font-weight:normal; margins:5px;} Top Developments• Ruling party supporters behind assaults against journalists.• Government wages politicized prosecutions against The Post. Key Statistic 400: Estimated turnout at a demonstration protesting anti-press attacks. Press freedom deteriorated in the first full year of Rupiah Banda’s presidency. Tensions mounted between Banda’s government and the...

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Attacks on the Press 2009: Zimbabwe

February 16, 2010 12:03 AM ET

h7 {float:none;width:auto;height:auto;font-family:sans-serif;font-weight:normal; margins:5px;} Top Developments• Government fails to implement reforms allowing private media to operate.• Two international broadcasters allowed to resume operation. Key Statistic $32,000: Application and accreditation fees imposed on international journalists. In a measure of the deplorable state of press freedom in Zimbabwe, a year marked by harassment...

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Attacks on the Press 2009: Africa Developments

February 16, 2010 12:02 AM ET

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CPJ condemns police harassment of Nigerian editor

February 12, 2010 5:32 PM ET

New York, February 12, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists today called on police and prosecutors in northern Nigeria to withdraw the threat of arrest and prosecution of Mallam Tukur, left, the editor-in-chief and publisher of the independent weekly, Desert Herald, based in Kaduna State....

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CPJ Impact

February 11, 2010 3:37 PM ET

February 2010News from the Committee to Protect Journalists...

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Cameroonian security agents detain 2 journalists

February 9, 2010 5:03 PM ET

New York, February 9, 2010—Security agents in Cameroon have detained two journalists since Friday in an apparent effort to learn the source of a purported memo from the chairman of the state oil company about the purchase of a luxury boat, according to local journalists and news reports. ...

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Museveni accuses two Ugandan journalists of libel

February 3, 2010 4:17 PM ET

New York, February 3, 2010—An opinion column in Uganda’s leading independent newspaper suggesting parallels between President Yoweri Museveni and former Philippine leader Ferdinand Marcos led to criminal libel charges against two journalists today, according to local media reports....

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Ethiopia jails editor whose paper challenged Zenawi

February 1, 2010 4:15 PM ET

New York, February 1, 2010—An Ethiopian judge sentenced a journalist to prison on Friday in connection with a January 2008 column that criticized Prime Minister Meles Zenawi’s statements about religious affairs in Ethiopia, according to local journalists....

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Journalist flees Zimbabwe after death threat

January 20, 2010 3:41 PM ET

New York, January 20, 2010—Freelance journalist Stanley Kwenda, left, a contributor to the private weekly The Zimbabwean, fled the country on Friday after he said he received a telephone threat from a high-ranking police officer, according to the paper’s editor, Wilf Mbanga. ...

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Journalist assaulted for his work in Namibia

January 14, 2010 4:36 PM ET

New York, January 14, 2010--The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Namibian authorities to thoroughly investigate an alleged attack by four assailants against freelance journalist John Grobler on January 8. Grobler told CPJ that four men attacked him at a bar Friday evening in the capital, Windhoek, cutting his...

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Leading investigative weekly suspended in Tanzania

January 12, 2010 1:01 PM ET

New York, January 12, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists called today for the suspension of independent weekly Swahili newspaper Kulikoni to be lifted immediately. Information Minister George Mkuchika announced the suspension of the leading investigative weekly on Friday, citing a sales and distribution ban for a period of 90 days beginning...

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Togolese journalist killed in Angola attack

January 11, 2010 4:41 PM ET

New York, January 11, 2010—The Committee to Protect Journalists called today on Angolan authorities to ensure the safety of sports journalists covering the African Nations Cup following the death of a Togolese sports journalist on Friday. Stanislas Ocloo was gunned down in the attack on Togo’s national soccer team’s...

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Press under fire in Puntland, CPJ tells leader

January 6, 2010 4:29 PM ET

Dear Mr President: The Committee to Protect Journalists is concerned about deteriorating press freedom conditions in Puntland, including detentions, censorship, harassment, and direct attacks by police officers. Many of these disturbing attacks have targeted the U.S. government-funded Voice of America and one of its reporters, although several local reporters say they are seeing an overall pattern of harassment.

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