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Sudanese security prevents distribution of Al-Jareeda newspaper for seven days

July 31, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - Chief-Editor of Al-Jareeda newspaper Ashraf Abdel-Aziz said the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) has prevented sending print runs to distribution points for seven days inflicting huge financial loss on the news daily.

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A Sudanese woman reads a local newspaper in Khartoum in 2010 (AFP PHOTOS)

“The NISS continued to prevent the distribution of the print runs until 8:00 am for a full week. This is an indirect confiscation of the newspaper because it is very difficult to send the newspaper to the states and main distribution centres in Khartoum after 8:00 am” Abdel-Aziz told Sudan Tribune.

“Does the NISS seek to destroy an independent newspaper that became close to people’s conscience? We really don’t know,” he wondered.

Abdel-Aziz added his newspaper has suffered heavy financial losses as a result of the continued confiscations and prevention of distribution in the capital, Khartoum and the various states.

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 Sudanese security 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.

It routinely confiscates newspapers either to prevent circulation of certain stories or to punish them retroactively for breaching unwritten red lines inflicting financial and moral losses on these media houses.

On January 7, the NISS confiscated 6 newspapers for publishing reports about the popular protests against the harsh economic conditions. Also, in February 2015, it seized entire print runs of 14 newspapers in one day without stating the reasons for its decision.