IFJ Protests Against Assault and Detainment of Nepalese Journalists

The International Federation of Journalists has sent a letter of protest to the Prime Minister of Nepal, voicing its concern over the recent assault of a journalist and the detainment of another journalist.


The IFJ have protested to the Government of Nepal in the following letter:


12 November 2003


Honorable Mr. Surya Bahadur Thapa

Prime Minister of Nepal

Prime Minister’s Office

Singh Dubar

Kathmandu

Kingdom of Nepal

Fax: 9771226286, 9771227765

email: info@pmo.gov.np


Honorable Ananat Raj Pandey

Home Secretary, HMG/Nepal

Fax: 9771228166,

email: homehmg@wlink.com.np


Mr. Nayan Bahadur Khatri

Chairman, Nepal Human Right Commission

Fax: 9771547973

Email: nhrc@ntc.net.np


Your Excellency,


The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), the world’s largest journalists’ organisation representing over 500,000 journalists worldwide, is deeply concerned over the recent assault of journalist Umesh Ojha, and the arrest of journalist Madhav Bidrohi.


According to our information, on 3 November 2003, Bidrohi was arrested in Jhiljhile, on his way from Birtamod to Damak, in Jhapa district. He was detained at the Char Aali Military Barrack and released by security forces after five hours in detention.


Bidrohi is the Federation of Nepalese Journalists' (FNJ) Jhapa section president and works for the daily Spacetime. The security forces also confiscated his belongings.


In a separate incident on 4 November, journalist Umesh Ojha, of the state owned daily newspaper Gorkhapatra was assaulted by security forces at the main entrance to Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu.


According to our information a police constable pushed the journalist and threw his Government Department of Communications issued Press Pass to the ground.


The IFJ strongly condemns the assault and detainment of Nepalese journalists. The IFJ calls on the Nepalese government to launch a full investigation into these incidents.


The IFJ asks the government of Nepal to express its commitment to press freedom and to ensure the safety of all journalists in Nepal.


Yours sincerely,




Christopher Warren

President, IFJ



Recommended action:


Send appeals:


  • Condemning the assault of Umesh Ojha

  • Condemning the arrest of Madhav Bidrohi

  • Urging the Government of Nepal to begin a full investigation into these incidents.

  • Urging the Government to ensure the safety of all journalists working in Nepal.


    Appeals:


    Honorable Mr. Surya Bahadur Thapa

    Prime Minister of Nepal

    Prime Minister’s Office

    Singh Dubar

    Kathmandu

    Kingdom of Nepal

    Fax: 9771226286, 9771227765

    email: info@pmo.gov.np


    Honorable Ananat Raj Pandey

    Home Secretary, HMG/Nepal

    Fax: 9771228166,

    email: homehmg@wlink.com.np


    Mr. Nayan Bahadur Khatri

    Chairman, Nepal Human Right Commission

    Fax: 9771547973

    Email: nhrc@ntc.net.np



    Please copy appeals to the IFJ Asia Office at ifj-asia@alliance.org.au