United Nations

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Why hasn’t the U.N. reached out to Sandhya Eknelygoda?

On February 18, we noted that the United Nations in New York finally said it received a letter from Sandhya Eknelygoda, the wife of missing journalist Prageeth Eknelygoda. Sandhya had given the letter to the U.N. representative in Colombo, Neil Buhne, on January 24, the first anniversary of her husband’s disappearance. It was also channeled…

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Request for help for Prageeth: Lost in the mail?

Finally, there has been some movement in the case of Prageeth Eknelygoda, at left, the Sri Lankan journalist who disappeared on January 24, 2010. The United Nations says it has received a letter from Eknelygoda’s wife, Sandhya, that she had handed over to the U.N. representative in Colombo, Neil Buhne, on January 24, the anniversary…

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Attacks on the Press 2010: Introduction

International Institutions Fail To Defend Press Freedom by Joel Simon UNESCO is the primary entity within the United Nations dedicated to the defense of press freedom. Yet in 2010, journalism and human rights organizations were forced to launch an international campaign to stop UNESCO from presenting a prize honoring one of Africa’s most notorious press…

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Montas is seeking justice in a criminal complaint against Duvalier. (Reuters/Eduardo Munoz)

Haitian journalist Montas levels charges against Baby Doc

Former dictator Jean Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier is facing some blowback after breezing into Haiti last Sunday following a 25-year absence. On Wednesday, prominent Haitian journalist and former UN spokesperson Michele Montas joined three others in filing criminal complaints against the former dictator who returned to the country Sunday, just days after the anniversary of…

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CPJ

Obiang prize suspended indefinitely

The Obiang prize, named for and funded by one of Africa’s most notorious dictators, was a very poor idea from the start and our goal, bluntly, was to kill it. We didn’t quite succeed in getting an outright cancellation, but the prize, while technically alive, is in a deep coma with virtually no chance of…

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Berlusconi finds a wiretap bill more difficult to pass than expected. (AP/Riccardo De Luca)

In Italy, vote postponed on Berlusconi’s ‘gag law’

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is leaving for vacation in a very bad mood. On Thursday, the House of Deputies, although dominated by Berlusconi’s center-right coalition, decided to postpone until September its vote on a wiretap bill that had been considered a bellwether by a government wracked by internecine wars and confronted with ominous poll…

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CPJ
Maziar Bahari (Newsweek)

Columbia J-students learn the price of reporting in Iran

The two venues for the launch of Attacks on the Press in New York couldn’t have been more different. On Tuesday morning I was joined by Newsweek’s Maziar Bahari, and CPJ Asia Program Coordinator Bob Dietz in the hushed auditorium of the Dag Hammarskjöld Library at United Nations headquarters. The event was so well attended…

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At U.N, Bahari and CPJ urge global attention

Newsweek journalist Maziar Bahari helped us launch Attacks on the Press at the United Nations in New York today. Bahari, an Iranian-Canadian citizen, was labeled an enemy of the Iranian regime and cruelly imprisoned for 118 days last year in Tehran. His very presence today, CPJ Deputy Director Robert Mahoney noted, was testament to the…

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Sri Lanka’s war on journalists

Today marks the 100th day of J.S. Tissainayagam’s 20-year prison term. Tissainayagam, known as Tissa, was convicted of “terrorism” charges for articles documenting human rights abuses by the Sri Lankan military, as well as the difficult conditions faced by Sri Lankans displaced in the nation’s long war. His sentence was a dire warning to other…

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World leaders note Sri Lankan press abuses

Sri Lanka got special mention in the statements of world leaders marking World Press Freedom Day, May 3. It’s not surprising. The government in Colombo has coupled an all-out effort to end its war with the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam with an assault on critics in the Sri Lankan media. U.S. President Barack…

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