The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) joins its affiliate the Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ) in condemning recent incidents of violation of press freedom in Nepal. The IFJ demands an immediate probe into the incidents to ensure justice to media and journalists.
The FNJ media monitoring unit documented five incidents of media rights violations in the last two weeks of September. On September 15, the Chief District Officer Dhan Prasad Pokharel harassed Laxmi Shah, a reporter with Kantipur daily, in Bara district. Similarly, on September 25, policemen harassed Prabitra Kumar Shahi of Nagarik daily and Ramesh Rawal of Karobar daily in Kalikot district. In both incidents, the journalists were harassed because of their news.
On September 27, photojournalists Suraj Bainju of Annapurna Post daily and Chhring Lama of Commander Post daily were attacked by taxi drivers who were on strike at the Tinkune area of Kathmandu. The journalists were taking photographs of the taxi drivers blocking the highway. Journalist Krishna Khanal was also beaten by unidentified people at Gworko of Kathmandu and Gokarna Dayal of Gorkhapatra daily was attacked in Baitadi district. On the same day, unidentified people vandalized two power generators and other equipment of Halesi FM 102.4, a community radio station, in Khotang district.
FNJ General Secretary Ujir Magar, in a statement, said, “The increasing trend of such incidents has endangered press freedom. Such incidents also make journalist safety more challenging. The FNJ demands punishment of the culprits, appropriate compensation to victimized journalists and media; and also urges authorities to ensure a safe environment for media.”
Condemning the recent incidents of attacks and harassment of journalists in Nepal, the IFJ said, “The IFJ demands that the Nepal government immediately investigate these incidents and punish the culprits. Nepal should ensure a safe environment for media and journalists to operate.”
For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +61 2 9333 0946
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