IFJ Protests Over Violent Attacks Against Journalists in Bangladesh

The International Federation of Journalists has protested to the Government of Bangladesh over the violent attacks against journalists by those associated by the ruling party in Bangladesh.


The IFJ has protested to the Government of Bangladesh in the following letter:


15 December 2003


The Hon Begum Khaleda Zia

Prime Minister

Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh


VIA FACSIMILE: 0015 880 2 881 0407


Dear Prime Minister,


The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), the global organisation of journalists representing over 500,000 journalists worldwide, is deeply concerned over the violent assault against seven journalists by agents associated with the Bangladesh Nationalist Party-BNP.


According to our information, on 8 December 2003, seven journalists were assaulted and injured by members of the ruling BNP in the southern district of Jhalakathi in Barisal. The journalists were arriving at the Jhalakathi Press Club to attend a programme organised in protest against the attack against journalist Humayun Kabir by local ruling BNP terrorists on December 4 2003.


The attackers ransacked the Press Club as well as the office of the local daily newspaper Satakantha in presence of the police. The journalists injured were Shamim Azad, Mominul Islam, Manabendra Bataybal, Pulak Chatterjee, Akkas Sikder, Alauddin and Shamim Ahmmed.


All were later admitted to a clinic in Barisal and protests and rallies were later held condemning the attacks.


It is indicative of the poor state of press freedom in Bangladesh that those protesting an earlier incident of violence against journalists should become the victim of further acts of violence themselves.


The IFJ demands that the Government of Bangladesh launch a full investigation into the attacks against these journalists and work to bring those involved to justice. The Government of Bangladesh must work to ensure that journalists are free from fear of violence or reprisal, as a free and independent media is central to ensure democracy.


The IFJ asks that the Government of Bangladesh ensure press freedom and safety of all journalists working in Bangladesh.


Yours sincerely





Christopher Warren

President, IFJ


Recommended Action:


Send appeals to the Government of Bangladesh:


  • Condemning the attack against the seven journalists

  • Urging the Government of Bangladesh to launch a full investigation into the attack

  • Ensure press freedom and safety in Bangladesh


    Appeals:


    The Hon Begum Khaleda Zia

    Prime Minister

    Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh

    VIA FACSIMILE: 0015 880 2 881 0407


    For further information please contact Jacqui Park at ifj@ifj-asia.org


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