The International Federation of
Journalists (IFJ) joins its affiliate, the Federation of Nepali Journalists
(FNJ), in calling for full accountability from the authorities over an incident
in which a journalist was reportedly taken in by the police and questioned in what
appears to be an attempt at intimidation.
According to reports received
from the FNJ, Suman Malla, Station In-Charge of Radio Mugu in the mid-western
region of Nepal, was arrested at his office on December 14, a few days after
his station broadcast a news item on weapons smuggling in the region. The district
administration apparently claimed that the arrest was made after Malla refused
to clarify certain aspects about the news broadcast.
The FNJ has called on the
district administration to explain its actions which in its words, constitute a
serious assault on the “right of a journalist to report on matters that concern
the general public”.
Nepal’s national law allows for
various other means through which government authorities and the general public
can seek redress for grievances occasioned by media reporting.
The FNJ has, in the context of
the recent incident, reiterated its longstanding conviction that the government
should adopt the lawful course, rather than employ tactics of arrest and
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