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Sudanese newspaper to suspend publication over government crackdown

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October 6, 2013 (KHARTOUM) - The editorial board of Al-Jareeda newspaper announced today that it decided to suspend publication for two weeks after Sudanese authorities seized several editions lately causing it to incur heavy financial losses.

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Sudanese newspaper vendors at a bus station in Khartoum (file/AP)

The independent daily has been one of the most newspapers in Sudan subject to confiscation and pre-publication censorship.

Al-Jareeda’s Sunday edition was seized by officers from the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) for the sixth time over the last month in a move that its editors believe is deliberate to financially decapitate its owner who is trying to work independent from government influences.

Journalists in Sudan frequently complain from NISS continuous interference in their work to prevent publishing certain items or even deciding what makes it to the front page.

The outbreak of bloody protests this month triggered some of the worst crackdown by NISS on newspapers which saw several of them being suspended for several days including pro-government dailies such as al-Sudani and al-Intibaha.

NISS also banned several columnists from writing over their criticism of the government’s handling of the protests.

The Sudanese Journalists Union (SJU) on Sunday called on "competent authorities" , not to confiscate newspapers and instead resort to legal venues in publishing offenses and refrain from extraordinary measures .

The statement underscored the country ’s need for media so that it highlights the true image of Sudan and affirm press freedom in the country.

This is the first reaction by SJU since the latest wave of security crackdown on newspapers.

Diaa Al-Deen Bilal, editor in chief of Al-Sudani newspaper, told Sudan Tribune last week that SJU is playing a "zero role" in the protection of newspapers against the crackdown now or in the past.

(ST)

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Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

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