Home | News    Friday 14 March 2014

Sudan security seizes copies of 11 newspapers in a week: RWB

separation
increase
decrease
separation
separation

March 13, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – Security officials in Sudan have seized copies of 11 newspapers in less than a week, as authorities continue to impose tough measures on media outlets, Reporters Without Borders (RWB) said in a statement on Monday.

JPEG - 16.7 kb
Reporters Without Borders has condemned the seizure of copies of 11 newspapers in a week by Sudanese security officials (AFP)

RWB said Sudanese authorities seemed to be taking an increasingly hardened stance against the country’s press recently, even targeting media traditionally known to be pro-government.

Cléa Kahn-Sriber, the head of RWB’s Africa desk, described the latest round of seizures as “only a drop in the ocean of arbitrary measures” taken against the media by the National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS).

“This particular harmful strategy of seizing already printed newspapers amounts to a de facto suspension of publications without having to come up with legal motives and while condemning these papers to a slow financial agony. Another side effect of this tactic is the self-censorship editors impose on themselves in order to avoid their papers being confiscated,” said Kahn-Sriber.

She said the seizure of English language newspapers and pro-government papers indicated the Sudanese government is becoming more radical in its censorship.

Among the newspapers targeted was the pro-government Al Hurra, which was confiscated on 8 March for the fourth time in six days.

Al Hurra was earlier targeted on 5 March, with copies of Elaph, an independent newspaper focusing on economic issues, also seized, while The Citizen, an English-language paper, was forbidden from going to press.

The seizures came on the same day as Sudan’s Constitutional Court cancelled a suspension order on Al Tayar newspaper, which was imposed by the NISS in June 2012.

While the motives for the suspension were never made official, a series of articles concerning corruption cases in the Cottons Group company are believed to have triggered the measure.

“This belated court decision does appears somewhat worthless when one considers the general climate of the press in Sudan,” said Kahn-Sriber, adding that the future prospects for press freedom in Sudan remained “bleak”.

Other newspapers targeted include Al Jareed, Akhir Lahza and Al Sudani, which had their issues seized on 4 March. It was the second day in a row that Al Sudani was targeted, with copies of Al Hurra and Al Ahram Al Youm also confiscated on 3 March.

Meanwhile, intelligence services have also banned columnist Haidar Kheirallah from writing until further notice.

Several Sudanese media defence groups have denounced the raft of suspensions against newspapers, saying that so-called “red line” issues, which media are barred from covering, have multiplied in recent months.

Advocacy groups say it is virtually impossible to report on military actions or dissident groups in Sudan’s conflict regions of Darfur, South Kordofan and Blue Nile.

In February, three daily newspapers had issues seized most likely for publishing reports of the killing of a merchant at the hands of pro-government Janjaweed militias in North Kordofan state capital El-Obeid.

Earlier this year, the NISS lifted a two-year ban on the opposition Popular Congress Party’s (PCP) Ray Al-Sha’b newspaper, stipulating 19 conditions for resuming its publication, all of which were swiftly rejected by the editorial board and the PCP.

RWB has received reports of at least 18 confiscations or suspensions of newspapers in Sudan since January 2014.

Sudan was ranked 172nd out of 180 countries in the 2014 Reporters Without Borders press freedom index.

(ST)

Comments on the Sudan Tribune website must abide by the following rules. Contravention of these rules will lead to the user losing their Sudan Tribune account with immediate effect.

- No inciting violence
- No inappropriate or offensive language
- No racism, tribalism or sectarianism
- No inappropriate or derogatory remarks
- No deviation from the topic of the article
- No advertising, spamming or links
- No incomprehensible comments

Due to the unprecedented amount of racist and offensive language on the site, Sudan Tribune tries to vet all comments on the site.

There is now also a limit of 400 words per comment. If you want to express yourself in more detail than this allows, please e-mail your comment as an article to comment@sudantribune.com

Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

Comment on this article


 
 

The following ads are provided by Google. SudanTribune has no authority on it.


Sudan Tribune

Promote your Page too

Latest Comments & Analysis


Ateny flip-flopping, where is his loyalty to President Kiir? 2017-01-15 07:57:11 By Chuor Deng Chuor The world knows that Ateny Wek Ateny is supposed to be the Press Secretary and official spokesperson of President Salva Kiir. but the reality of the matter is that Ateny has (...)

Obama’s promises and pledges for Darfur went unheeded with lifting sanctions 2017-01-15 06:43:31 By Mahmoud A. Suleiman Barak Obama's Lifting of Sanctions off the genocidal regime of the National Congress Party (NCP) in Sudan is based on weak, unconvincing, pretty flimsy excuses and very (...)

The Final Betrayal of Sudan: Partial Suspension of Sanction 2017-01-14 21:31:35 “The Final Betrayal of Sudan: Obama administration’s lifting of economic sanctions; UN Ambassador Samantha Power justifying the move, claiming a ‘sea change’ of improvement in humanitarian access” (...)


MORE






Latest Press Releases


Abduction of S. Sudan Chief Justice’s aide illegal, should be condemned 2017-01-16 05:27:50 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 16th January 2015 Legal Watch Associates South Sudan has learned with shock and dismay the abduction of Mr Gama Thomas, an aide to the Chief Justice, Chan Reech Madut. (...)

Carter Center welcomes new regulations on humanitarian affairs 2017-01-12 07:53:16 The Carter Center ATLANTA, Januarg 11, 2017 – The Carter Center welcomes the recent regulations issued by the government of Sudan aimed at facilitating humanitarian relief throughout the country (...)

Nertiti massacre in Central Darfur exposes the criminal nature of Bashir’s regime 2017-01-03 11:54:47 Sudan Democracy First Group Nirtiti massacre in Central Darfur exposes the criminal nature of Bashir's regime 2 January 2017 On the first day of 2016, and only one day after President Bashir's (...)


MORE

Copyright © 2003-2017 SudanTribune - All rights reserved.