June 2012

CPJ Blog

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Film 'Reportero' features tenacious Mexican magazine

June 29, 2012 5:42 PM ET

A week before Sunday's crucial presidential elections in Mexico, CPJ participated on a panel with filmmaker Bernardo Ruíz and Mexican journalist Sergio Haro about the perilous conditions for journalists in that country, where CPJ research shows 48 journalists have been murdered or disappeared since outgoing President Felipe Calderón took...

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Can Pakistan's corrupt media be checked?

June 29, 2012 3:02 PM ET

With ratings driving the profits of media channels, journalists and political talk show hosts are being motivated to stir up controversy at any cost. Meanwhile, the professionals who believe in credibility, objectivity, and honesty as essential parts of ethical journalism are becoming sidelined....

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High-tech censorship on the rise in East Africa

June 29, 2012 12:04 PM ET

Ethiopia has always been a country at the cutting edge of Internet censorship in Africa. In the wake of violence after the 2005 elections, when other states were only beginning to recognize the potential for online reporters to bypass traditional pressures, Meles Zenawi's regime was already blocking major news sites...

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What China's Weibo censorship does, and does not, reveal

June 28, 2012 4:01 PM ET

A flurry of research on Weibo censorship underscores what we already know about the Chinese company Sina's microblog service--with a few surprises thrown in. ...

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Another journalist reports sex assault in Tahrir Square

June 26, 2012 5:05 PM ET

The story sounds hideously like another--one of a chaotic, predatory attack on a woman journalist in Cairo's Tahrir Square. Clothes torn from her body, hundreds of men surging to grab her breasts and claw at her. A woman wondering, "Maybe this is how I go, how I die." It...

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Author of Chauncey Bailey book: 'We had to do this'

June 22, 2012 3:11 PM ET

When Thomas Peele came into the CPJ offices last week to discuss Killing the Messenger, his book about the murder of journalist Chauncey Bailey, he described a story that was layered with scandal, including a polygamous cult, bankruptcy, kidnapping, rape, a flawed confession, leaked evidence, and secret alliances--not to...

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What to do if Google warns of state-sponsored attack

June 22, 2012 12:55 PM ET

Some journalists continue to receive the warning from Google about state-sponsored attacks that we mentioned last week. The message appears on top of logged-in services like Gmail. Occasionally it will disappear for a few hours and then reappear, but there is no way to remove it....

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Investigative reporting and Kyrgyzstan's selective justice

June 21, 2012 5:40 PM ET

At a Bishkek roundtable Tuesday called "The Fourth Estate: Rule of the Game," Almambet Shykmamatov, Kyrgyzstan's justice minister, encouraged local reporters to expose government corruption, local press reported. The minister said authorities would follow up on such reports, grant security to investigative journalists, and might even pay them up to...

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Dangerous disease--the unexpected threat

June 21, 2012 1:03 PM ET

Last week, Tarun Sehrawat, a 22-year-old Indian photographer for Tehelka magazine, died from cerebral malaria and its complications, according to several of his colleagues and media accounts. He had returned, ill, from a shooting assignment with Tehelka's reporter Tusha Mittal in May. The team had been covering the ongoing Maoist revolt...

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Don't punish Chinese restrictions with more restrictions

June 21, 2012 10:31 AM ET

The Committee to Protect Journalists is watching with concern the progress of H.R. 2899, the Chinese Media Reciprocity Act of 2011, which is under discussion Wednesday in front of the Subcommittee on Immigration Policy and Enforcement. The bill seeks to reduce the number of visas available to journalists (and their...

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Skype Trojan targets Syrian citizen journalists, activists

June 20, 2012 3:25 PM ET

The Russian manufacturer promises results. The software can be used to control your own or, say, a customer's computer by making it a remote software client. Or it could be used for spying on others....

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Al-Arabiya news team missing in the Philippines

June 19, 2012 12:56 PM ET

CPJ is monitoring with concern the news coverage of Baker Abdulla Atyani, a Pakistan-based Jordanian Al-Arabiya TV journalist, and his two Philippine crew members, Rolando Letrero and Ramelito Vela, who have been unaccounted for since June 12. Atyani, Letrero, and Vela left their hotel in Jolo, in the southern...

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Video: Journalists in exile

June 19, 2012 12:05 AM ET

Four East African journalists who were forced to flee their countries tell about their experiences, difficulties, and hopes for the future. (3:43)Read CPJ's report, "Journalists in exile: Crisis in East Africa," for more information about journalists forced to go into exile....

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Displaced by threats, old life gives way to new

June 19, 2012 12:04 AM ET

For seven years I lived in Panajachel, a tourist town on the beautiful Atitlán Lake in Guatemala. There, my husband, Juan Miguel Arrivillaga, and I started a family and the independent news outlet Anti Magazine. We also hosted a radio program on the local station Radio Ati....

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For exiled Eritreans in Sudan, fear greater than most

June 19, 2012 12:03 AM ET

With the launch of CPJ's most recent exile report, I will have worked exactly three years for our Journalist Assistance program. More than 500 cases later, I have helped journalists who have gone into hiding or exile to escape threats; those in need of medicine and other support while...

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Q&A: Nadira Isayeva on exile from Dagestan, in US

June 19, 2012 12:02 AM ET

Nadira Isayeva, a 2010 CPJ International Press Freedom Award winner, has been living in exile since she left her native Dagestan, in Russia's volatile North Caucasus, in November 2011. Isayeva, the editor-in-chief of the independent weekly Chernovik, had been harassed by security forces for her relentless, critical coverage of...

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US senator condemns Ethiopia's persecution of the press

June 15, 2012 12:48 PM ET

On Wednesday, the same day the White House announced a strategic plan committing the United States to elevating its efforts in "challenging leaders whose actions threaten the credibility of democratic processes" in sub-Saharan Africa, a senior member of the U.S. Congress challenged the erosion of press freedom in a...

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Artist's exhibit tells new stories about killed journalists

June 14, 2012 6:08 PM ET

Julian Koschwitz is doing his part to ensure that the 918 journalists killed for their work since 1992 don't fade into mere numbers....

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Spreading the security message

June 14, 2012 2:03 PM ET

Video streaming by UstreamOn the frontlines of global reporting, knowledge is safety. CPJ's event series to promote our new Journalist Security Guide continued Wednesday in Washington, D.C. where we teamed up with Internews for a panel discussion on journalist security on-site and online. ...

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Bangladesh backsliding on press freedom

June 14, 2012 1:01 PM ET

"Bangladeshi democracy [may be] doomed to more of the same," International Crisis Group wrote in a recent commentary. They are describing a longstanding pattern of antagonism between Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's Awami League and the opposition Bangladesh National Party (BNP), which the Crisis Group describes as "a pernicious cycle...

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Mission Journal: Somaliland's press harassed, disappointed

June 13, 2012 5:29 PM ET

"I'm free but I don't feel free," said Mohamed Abdi Urad, chief editor of Yool, a critical weekly published in the semi-autonomous republic of Somaliland. Mohamed had just been released on May 22 after a week in detention at Hargeisa Central Police Station. His crime? "I have no idea,"...

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Brazil restates commitment to press freedom, UN plan

June 13, 2012 12:58 PM ET

CPJ has received an encouraging letter from Ambassador Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti, Brazil's permanent representative to the United Nations, affirming the country's support for the UNESCO-led U.N. Plan of Action for Security of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity. ...

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Philippines' Aquino demonstrates selective political will

June 13, 2012 10:43 AM ET

Some weeks ago, the body of Esmail Amil Enog was found. The corpse had been chopped to pieces and then thrown together in a sack. Enog was a witness in a grisly massacre in November 2009, which took the lives of 57 people, 32 of them journalists, on a stretch...

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Amid violence, lack of unity among Honduran journalists

June 12, 2012 2:13 PM ET

On May 25, the Honduran press corps took to the streets of Tegucigalpa and four other cities to reject the growing levels of violence against members of the media.  Many marchers donned yellow-and-black t-shirts emblazoned with the words: "Killing journalists will not kill the truth."...

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Afghan media is under political and economic pressure

June 11, 2012 4:24 PM ET

Danish Karokhel, who won a CPJ International Press Freedom Award in 2008, messaged this morning concerned that the news agency he runs, Pajhwok Afghan News, and some other media outlets have been referred to the Attorney General's Office by the Ministry of Information and Culture for reporting on an...

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In China, press rights equal press control

June 11, 2012 3:03 PM ET

China's state news agency Xinhua published the full text of the state council's National Human Rights Action Plan 2012-15 on Monday. There is no section dedicated to press freedom. But the most striking omissions can be found in the text itself....

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Amid assaults on press, Uganda police promise reforms

June 8, 2012 5:18 PM ET

Joseph Mutebi, a photojournalist for the popular vernacular state-owned daily Bukedde, spent his afternoon trying to file a complaint with the police in the capital, Kampala. "First they told me the officer who assaulted me was based at another station, so I went there and now they are telling...

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State-sponsored attacks: open season on online journalists

June 8, 2012 2:39 PM ET

The last few weeks have offered the strongest indications yet that nation-states are using customized software to exploit security flaws on personal computers and consumer Internet services to spy on their users. The countries suspected include the United States, Israel, and China. Journalists should pay attention--not only because this is...

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Hungary's media law still unsatisfactory

June 8, 2012 12:27 PM ET

The Hungarian press law is again drawing fire from the European Union; the amendments adopted by the Hungarian Parliament on May 24 have not placated Brussels....

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In Pakistan, UN human rights chief meets with Jahangir

June 7, 2012 1:43 PM ET

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay, in opening remarks at her press conference in Islamabad on Thursday, addressed a wide range of problems in Pakistan, including those faced by journalists. (The full statement is on the website of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.) What...

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Defining role of the press in genocide prevention

June 6, 2012 1:22 PM ET

Talking about genocide prevention in the shadow of the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camps brings an intense and unique gravity to the discussions. The academic presentations cannot extract themselves from the looming presence of the barbed wires and grim towers surrounding the Nazis' most infamous death factory....

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Google gives Chinese Web users glimpse into censorship

June 5, 2012 3:41 PM ET

In China, people know enough not to take to the streets to commemorate the brutal crackdown on demonstrators in Tiananmen Square in 1989. Beijing is very quiet in the days before and after June 4. The Internet is a different story....

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In India, imprisoned journalist's plea for help

June 5, 2012 1:13 PM ET

The New Delhi-based Tehelka magazine published an open letter by imprisoned freelance journalist Lingaram Kodopi on Monday. Kodopi, one of the two journalists CPJ documented in prison in India on December 1, 2011, has been held without charge since September 2011 as a suspected associate of insurgent Maoists in Chhattisgarh. His...

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EU, UN officials in Pakistan must make time for Jahangir

June 5, 2012 12:47 PM ET

There is no better time than now for U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay and EU Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton to step out of their tightly planned schedule of meetings in Pakistan and make a trip to the home of human rights activist Asma Jahangir....

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South Africans clash on Twitter over #Zumaspear

June 4, 2012 5:24 PM ET

South African journalist and arts critic Charl Blignaut made what turned out to be an excellent prediction. "Of all the work on show, it's this depiction of the president that will set the most tongues wagging and most likely generate some howls of disapproval," he wrote on May 13...

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Foreign broadcasters shut down for Cambodian elections

June 4, 2012 4:11 PM ET

How far has democracy advanced in Cambodia? Not very far. Activists from three different political parties died during the 15-day campaign period leading up to the elections, in which the ruling Cambodian People's Party won a large majority of seats, according to a report issued by the Committee for Free...

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How times change in Sri Lanka, and how they don't

June 4, 2012 12:48 PM ET

For a good historical perspective on the abuse of journalists in Sri Lanka, Iqbal Athas, the recipient of a 1994 International Press Freedom Award from CPJ, wrote a center-page spread for the 25th anniversary edition of the Sunday Times, a popular weekly in Colombo. Athas, a critical journalist who...

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Third witness to Maguindanao massacre killed

June 1, 2012 3:34 PM ET

The climate of impunity that fostered the November 23, 2009, massacre of 57 people, including 32 journalists, is alive and well not only on the southern Philippines island of Mindanao, where the massacre took place, but in all of the country. The revelation that the brutalized body of a key...

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A heads-up for Sri Lanka press freedom watchers

June 1, 2012 12:55 PM ET

Former Attorney General Mohan Peiris has been ordered to testify about a statement he made at the U.N. Committee Against Torture in Geneva on November 9, 2011, in which he said that Prageeth Eknelygoda was alive and living outside the country (see "Sri Lanka's savage smokescreen"). Peiris will have to appear...

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