Office of Controversial Magazine Weekly Blitz Bombed, Bangladesh

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) expressed its shock and concern over a bomb attack on the office on Bangladeshi magazine the Weekly Blitz on July 7.

IFJ President Christopher Warren said: “This is an appalling and unnecessary attack that demonstrates a blatant disregard of press freedom, as well as the serious nature of threats Bangladeshi journalists are forced to face in trying to carry out their work.”

Weekly Blitz editor, Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury, is currently on trial for sedition after writing about radical Islam.

According to Choudhury, two small devices exploded outside of the Weekly Blitz office in the capital of Dhaka, while two other unexploded bombs were found inside the building. There were no injuries.

Choudhury, who faces the death penalty when his trial resumes on July 13 in Dhaka, has written about the spread of Islamic militancy in Bangladesh, and has criticised anti-Israeli attitudes in Islamic countries.

“The IFJ calls upon authorities to act immediately in bringing those responsible for the bomb attacks to justice,” Warren said.

“Furthermore the death penalty that Choudhury is facing is a barbaric response,” Warren said.

“The IFJ calls on the government of Bangladesh to drop all charges against Choudhury and immediately amend the laws so that journalists do not face such horrific sanctions for simply doing their job.”

For more information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +61 2 9333 0919

The IFJ represents over 500,000 journalists in 120 countries worldwide