The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is worried by reports of continuing attacks against media outlets in Nepal.
According to the Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ), an IFJ affiliate, a group of people attacked the office of Sandhyakalin, a daily evening paper located in a central district of Kathmandu, on September 21.
The group was reportedly protesting against reports in the paper about an earlier protest against a government decision to cut funding allocated for the public observance of upcoming festivals.
Meanwhile, an armed group of about 15 people attacked staff and equipment at the offices of the Kathmandu-based daily Metro Post and weekly Democracy on September 18.
The group, who described themselves as the Night Restaurant Entrepreneurs' Association, reportedly assaulted the editor, Ramhari Silwal, and computer operator Laxman Chitrakar, and smashed furniture and equipment, according to the FNJ.
“The continuing attacks on media outlets in Nepal highlight a worrying pattern of media being targeted because people are upset by the content of essentially straight-forward news reports. These attacks constitute a challenge for Nepal’s coalition government, which has assured the media community that it is committed to upholding the right to free speech,” IFJ Asia-Pacific said.
The IFJ joins the FNJ in calling for authorities to investigate these latest incidents and to bring the perpetrators to justice. Such action will help to set an example so that the public understands complaints against the media must be dealt with by means other than violence.
For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +612 9333 0919
The IFJ represents over 600,000 journalists in 122 countries