The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) joins journalists
to condemn the confiscation by the country’s authorities of a newspaper’s main
computer, which contained details of confidential sources.
Officers of Mongolia’s General Authority for Implementing
Court Decisions (GAFICD) entered the premises of the daily Niigmiin Toli (Public’s Mirror) in Mongolia’s
on August 27 and confiscated the paper’s host computer.
journalists protested the intimidation of the paper as a violation of media
confiscation, ordered by Chingeltei District Court in Ulaanbaatar, drew strong criticism from the
Confederation of Mongolian Journalists, an IFJ affiliate, and Globe International, a local organisation which seeks to
protect the rights of independent media and monitors violations of freedom of
expression in the country.
of a newspaper’s equipment and confidential data is a blatant act designed to
stifle free speech in Mongolia,”
IFJ Asia-Pacific Director Jacqueline
“The IFJ is
concerned by Mongolian authorities’ misuse of the law in an attempt to
intimidate journalists and censor the country’s media, and is alarmed at the
long-term implications for protecting the confidentiality of sources.”
confiscation is connected to the daily’s publication on September 1, 2009, of a
letter from citizens of Bayan-Olgii, in Mongolia’s far western Kazakh
province, in which they made allegations of corruption by local government
Governor S. Khaval and another seven public officials named in the letter
brought a civil defamation case to the Chingeltei District Court and demanded MNT
13 million (about USD 10,000) in compensation.
found the newspaper guilty of slander and defamation on December 24, 2009, and
ordered a retraction and apology be published and MNT 1.7 million be paid to the
appealed, but the Capital City Court reaffirmed the district court decision in
have conducted a hunger strike and more than 3000 people signed a petition to demand
that Khaval be removed from his position. Niigmiin
Toli’s head of administration, B. Yondonduichir, said on August 30 that the
ongoing protests and petition by the citizens of Bayan-Olgii proved the paper’s
publication of the letter was not groundless.
For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific
on +612 9333 0919
The IFJ represents more than 600,000 journalists in 125 countries
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