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Sudanese security confiscates Al-Jareeda newspaper

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Sudanese men look at newspapers displayed at a kiosk in the capital Khartoum on February 16, 2015. (AFP Photo)
October 14, 2017 (KHARTOUM) - Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) on Saturday has seized copies of Al-Jareeda newspaper from the printing house without stating reasons.

Chief-Editor of Al-Jareeda Ashraf Abdel-Aziz told Sudan Tribune that the NISS agents confiscated print runs of the newspaper without giving him any reasons.

Journalists working for the daily said the seizure was likely due to the publishing a number of Op-ed pieces discussing the recent harassment incident by a Sudanese diplomat at a bar in New York City.

According to Abdel-Aziz, the newspaper suffers substantial financial damage due to repeated NISS confiscations.

“However, the biggest damage to the newspaper lies in the continued ban of two opinion writers, Zuhair al-Sarraj and Osman Shabona,” he said.

Last year, the NISS gave Al-Jareeda editorial board an alarming explicit order to stop the two writers. Since then, Shabona and Al-Sarraj’s writings have only appeared in the electronic version of the news daily.

Al-Jareeda has been one of the most newspapers in Sudan subject to suspension and confiscation. In May 2016, the NISS confiscated copies of the newspaper four times during five days.

The NISS usually issues verbal directives to the Chief-Editors banning them from publishing particular news especially those pertaining to the protests and armed movements or other issues which the security sees sensitive.

Following the lift of pre-publication censorship, the NISS started punishing newspapers retroactively by seizing copies of newspapers that breach unwritten red lines inflicting financial and moral losses on these media houses.

In February 2015, it seized copies of 14 newspapers from printing press without giving reasons.

Journalists say the NISS uses seizures of print copies of newspapers, not only to censor the media but also to weaken them economically.

In July 2016, Al-Taghyeer newspaper decided to suspend publishing and laid off its staff following large financial loss incurred due to repeated confiscations.

(ST)

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Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.

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