The International Federation of
Journalists (IFJ) is dismayed at regular reports of violence against
journalists and vandalism of media equipment amid deteriorating public respect for the media community in Nepal.
According to the Federation of
Nepali Journalists (FNJ), an IFJ affiliate, there were three separate incidents
on November 20 in which members of the public seriously abused journalists.
In the eastern Sunsari region, five journalists reported
receiving death threats via telephone from an unidentified group. Birendra KM,
Ekwal Ahamad, Jaya Krishna Yadav, Pramod Yadav and Dhirendra Chaudhary were
reportedly all threatened due a report on child abuse published in a local
newspaper two weeks ago.
A vehicle for the local ABC Nepal television
station was attacked and vandalised by an unidentified group while carrying
media personnel to Balaju in the industrial suburbs of Kathmandu
to report on a strike organised by the Citizens’ Struggle Committee to protest
the murder of two local sportsmen. Nabin Khadka, the driver of the vehicle, was
reportedly injured in the incident.
In the eastern Udayapur region,
journalist and joint secretary of the FNJ, Udayapur Chaprter, was reportedly
abused by the manager of a cement industries company when he visited the
business to gather information about corruption in the industry. The company’s
general manager has since issued an apology.
“As Nepal tries to
stabilise during its transition to democratic governance, journalists are an
invaluable asset to communicate important information to the public about political
change and progress and therefore must be able to report freely and
independently without fear of physical abuse,” IFJ
Government and police must take concrete action to intervene and stop the violent
attacks on media personnel that are becoming increasingly commonplace.”
The IFJ joins the FNJ in condemning all attacks on the media
and demanding a visible increase in the response of law enforcement agencies to
ensure that the perpetrators of violence are brought to justice.
information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific
on +612 9333 0919
The IFJ represents over 600,000 journalists in 120 countries worldwide