Posts Tagged ‘media’
Friday, February 27th, 2009
[Committee to Protect Journalists]
As the Sri Lankan government steps up its war with the LTTE, assaults on
journalists are on the rise. So are suspicions that the government is
complicit in these attacks.
Sri Lanka’s journalists are under intensive assault. Authorities have failed to carry out effective and credible investigations into the killing of journalists who question the government’s conduct of a war against Tamil separatists or criticize the military establishment. Three attacks in January targeting the mainstream media drew the world’s attention to the problem, but top journalists have been killed, attacked, threatened, and harassed since the government began to pursue an all-out military victory over the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in late 2006. Many local and foreign journalists and members of the diplomatic community believe the government is complicit in the attacks.
Sunday, January 25th, 2009
Sri Lanka is in the grip of its biggest military offensive against Tamil Tiger rebels, but the country’s journalists are also facing an unprecedented battle of their own. Since the killing of the anti-war Sunday Leader editor Wickrematunga on January 8, at least eight senior journalists and media activists have fled the island, fearing that they too could be targeted by unidentified attackers. Both local and international media rights groups have joined in demanding thorough investigations and an end to the culture of impunity that has encouraged attacks against the independent media over the years.
Saturday, January 24th, 2009
The United States said it was “appalled” by violence against journalists in Sri Lanka, after an editor was stabbed on Friday, the third attack on the country’s media this month. “The United States is appalled by continuing physical attacks and threats against media personnel in Sri Lanka,” State Department acting spokesman Robert Wood said in a statement. “These serious reports are disturbing indicators of the deteriorating atmosphere for media independence in Sri Lanka.” “We call on the government of Sri Lanka to protect all of its citizens by enforcing law and order, preventing intimidation of the media, and by conducting swift, full and credible investigations into attacks on journalists and other civilians,” the State Department said.
Friday, January 23rd, 2009
The editor of a Sri Lankan weekly newspaper and his wife have been assaulted in Colombo in the latest of a series of attacks on journalists. Reporters on the Rivira weekly say four men on motorcycles blocked Upali Tennakoon’s car and attacked the couple with iron rods and other weapons. The pair are in a stable condition. The attack comes two weeks after top editor Lasantha Wickramatunga was shot dead. Meanwhile, fierce fighting continues as troops battle rebels in the north-east.
Thursday, January 8th, 2009
Amnesty International urges the government of Sri Lanka to publicly condemn the shooting of Lasantha Wickramatunga, editor of the Sri Lankan Sunday Leader newspaper, and other attacks on the media. The human rights organization calls on Sri Lankan authorities to launch an independent investigation into the incident and other reported attacks on journalists. The shooting comes just two days after the privately owned MVC/MTV television studios in Colombo were ransacked by a gang of attackers who used claymore bombs to damage property. At least 14 media workers have been unlawfully killed in Sri Lanka since the beginning of 2006.
Thursday, January 8th, 2009
The killing of a prominent newspaper editor today and the bombing of a private television station on January 6, 2009, highlight the Sri Lankan government’s failure to stop violence against the media, Human Rights Watch and the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) said. The groups said that past investigations into attacks on journalists have led nowhere, and that the government should act quickly to bring the perpetrators of the attacks to justice.
Monday, November 3rd, 2008
[ IPI ]
Media in the North and East of the country have continued to bear the brunt of the worst forms of insecurity. Media access to war-affected areas is heavily restricted with journalists forced to reproduce information disseminated by the conflicting parties. Media are constantly threatened by all parties to the conflict in an effort to curtail independent and critical reporting. The International Mission condemns the murder of P. Devakumar in Jaffna in May 2008, as well as over a dozen other murders documented since 2005. The Mission is worried about the dangerous precedent this sets for all media nationally and internationally.
Thursday, March 20th, 2008
The appointment of a retired general to help run a Sri Lankan state television station is a sign of media militarisation not seen for decades, rights watchdogs said on Thursday. The government, engaged in a long-running war with Tamil Tiger rebels in the north of the island, called the accusation a “fabricated lie” and said former army major-general Sunil Silva would help cure chronic management weaknesses at the station.
Wednesday, March 12th, 2008
Reporters Without Borders is concerned about the fate of five Tamil journalists arrested by anti-terrorist police in Colombo in the past six days and urges the Sri Lankan authorities to explain why they are being held. “The anti-terrorist police are accusing the journalists of receiving money from the Tamil Tiger rebels, but after investigating, we can confirm that the funds in question came from a German foundation and from Tamil exiles,” the press freedom organisation said. “We condemn the fact the some of these journalists were badly beaten during their first few days in detention, and that this was clearly done to extract confessions from them.”
Monday, January 28th, 2008
The Committee to Protect Journalists is alarmed by Sri Lankan Defense Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa’s brazen public call yesterday to censor the media and reintroduce criminal defamation laws. The comments were published in a Sinhala-language interview by Sri Lanka’s largest weekly, Sunday Lankadeepa, according to Free Media Movement spokesman Sunanda Deshapriya and veteran Sri Lankan journalist Iqbal Athas. “If I have the power I will not allow any of these things to be written,” the minister said in reference to reporting on the military, according to the Free Media Movement translation.