Defamation

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Case   |   Nigeria

Nigerian secret police arrest online journalist

Three operatives of the State Security Service, Nigeria's secret police, on September 6 arrested Emenike Iroegbu, who runs the news website Abia Facts, from his home in Uyo, the capital of the southern state of Akwa Ibom, on suspicion of libelling the governor of neighboring Abia state, according to news reports. The operatives searched Iroegbu's house and took away his laptops, his phones, and his wife's phones, the reports said. The SSS released him the following day, and returned all items confiscated in the arrest, according to press reports.

September 19, 2016 3:59 PM ET

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Alerts   |   Maldives

Police raid newspaper after critical documentary airs in Maldives

Maldivian President Yameen Abdul Gayoom (left) arrives in Sri Lanka in this January 12, 2014, file photo. Police raided the office of the Maldives Independent on September 7 after its editor was interviewed in an Al-Jazeera documentary alleging corruption and abuse of power under Gayoom's government, allegations his government has denied.

Bangkok, September 9, 2016 - Authorities in the Maldives should cease harassing the Maldives Independent, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Police raided the daily newspaper's office hours after the Qatari broadcaster Al-Jazeera aired a documentary produced by the paper's former editor alleging high-level corruption in the Maldives.

September 9, 2016 1:47 PM ET

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Alerts   |   Bangladesh

Journalist detained over criminal defamation complaint in Bangladesh

Bangkok, September 6, 2016--Bangladeshi journalist Siddiqur Rahman Khan has been detained since September 1 after a criminal defamation complaint was filed against him under Article 57 of the 2006 Information and Communication Technology Act, according to news reports. The Committee to Protect Journalists called today for Khan's immediate release and an end to the use of criminal charges to harass and stifle online media in Bangladesh.

September 6, 2016 1:48 PM ET

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Blog   |   Mexico

Change to Mexican law leaves critical journalists at risk of steep fines

Carmen Aristegui, pictured at a news conference in July, is being sued by MVS, the broadcaster she used to work for. Changes to a law on fines in civil cases is making journalists in Mexico vulnerable. (AFP/Alfredo Estrella)

Sergio Aguayo, one of Mexico's most prominent political commentators, said he was taken by surprise when he heard he was being sued for "moral damages." The plaintiff, Humberto Moreira, is a former governor who faced allegations that he severely mishandled the state's finances, was involved in graft and corruption, and had ties to organized crime. He has always denied allegations against him, both when in office and after he resigned to become the president of the Institutional Revolutionary Party.

Alerts   |   Internet, Pakistan

Pakistani law could enable sweeping internet censorship

A man browses the internet at a cafe in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, in this September 18, 2013 file photo. (Reuters/Faisal Mahmood)

Bangkok, August 26, 2016 - Pakistani President Mamnoon Hussain should veto a bill that could allow for sweeping censorship of the internet and the prosecution of journalists, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Pakistan's National Assembly approved the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Bill 2015 last week and sent it to Hussain to sign into law, according to press reports.

August 26, 2016 11:57 AM ET

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Alerts   |   Honduras

Honduran reporter convicted of criminal defamation

In this 2014 file photo, a policeman walks next to graffiti from the Mara Salvatrucha criminal gang. If his recent conviction on defamation charges is upheld on appeal, TV reporter Ariel Armando D'Vicente faces three years in prison and a three-year ban on practicing journalism in connection with reports alleging police took bribes from gangs involved in smuggling. (AP/Esteban Felix)

Bogotá, Colombia, August 25, 2016 - Honduran prosecutors should cease pursuing criminal defamation charges against journalists, and lawmakers should swiftly repeal laws allowing for such prosecutions, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. If his recent conviction on defamation charges is upheld on appeal, TV reporter Ariel Armando D'Vicente faces three years in prison and a three-year ban on practicing journalism.

August 25, 2016 2:54 PM ET

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Alerts   |   Maldives

New Maldives criminal defamation law threatens press freedom

Maldivian police watch over an opposition demonstration in February 2012. (Reuters/Dinuka Liyanawatte)

New York, August 10, 2016--Maldivian President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom should veto a criminal defamation law the parliament passed yesterday, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. The legislation threatens to stifle criticism and investigative reporting.

August 10, 2016 5:03 PM ET

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Alerts   |   St. Vincent and the Grenadines

St. Vincent and the Grenadines draft law would allow prison for defamation online

Vincentian Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves, pictured on a 2009 visit to Trinidad, has defended criminal defamation laws as preserving "peace and tranquility." (AP/Andres Leighton)

New York, August 8, 2016--Lawmakers in St. Vincent and the Grenadines should amend or scrap a draft cybercrime law that would allow for prison sentences of up to two years for defamation, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Legislators are expected to consider the draft on Thursday, an opposition politician told CPJ.

August 8, 2016 4:17 PM ET

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Alerts   |   Bolivia

Bolivian president's criminal defamation suit threatens press freedom

Bolivian President Evo Morales attends a conference at the Vatican, April 15, 2016. (AP/Andrew Medichini)

New York, August 4, 2016 - Bolivian President Evo Morales should immediately drop a criminal defamation suit against a journalist that could have a chilling effect on press freedom in the country, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. Bolivian criminal court justice René Delgado announced yesterday that he would hear a case Morales filed against journalist Humberto Vacaflor.

August 4, 2016 5:51 PM ET

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Blog   |   Morocco

Mission Journal: Morocco's new press law undermined by draft penal code

King Mohammed VI waves a Moroccan flag as he inaugurates a solar plant in Ouarzazate, central Morocco, on February 4, 2016. The king and national symbols like the flag are sensitive subjects for the media. (AP/Abdeljalil Bounhar)

In the small, polished Moroccan capital of Rabat, pictures of King Mohamed VI, who took the throne in 1999, hang in many shops, offices, and hotels. In most of these, he is clean-shaven, smiling, and wearing a suit: a modern monarch. His image is part of the official narrative of the country as a place of moderation and progress.

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