21 April 2004
Volume 13 - 2004 Issue 16 (20 Apr. 2004)
Fourteen Nobel prize winners, including Vaclav Havel, Toni Morrison and José Saramago, have joined International PEN in calling on Burmese authorities to release jailed opposition leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and other imprisoned writers.
American forces in the central Iraqi city of Samara have reportedly shot and killed a local journalist and his driver, report the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) and Reporters Without Borders (Reporters sans frontières, RSF).
In Sudan, where one of the world's worst human rights crises is unfolding, no news has become bad news. While government-supported Arab militias wage what the United Nations calls a "scorched earth" campaign against an estimated 870,000 people, most of them civilians, Sudanese authorities have imposed a news blackout, report Human Rights Watch and Reporters Without Borders (Reporters sans frontières, RSF).
Unknown assailants set fire last week to the printing press of a fiercely independent newspaper in Banjul, The Gambia, prompting four IFEX members to raise concerns over press freedom in the west African country. The attack against "The Independent" was the second in six months.
As many as 300 journalists in Nepal have been arrested in recent days as public calls for a return to a multi-party democracy continue to mount, report the Center for Human Rights and Democratic Studies (CEHURDES), Reporters Without Borders (Reporters sans frontières, RSF), the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and the World Association of Newspapers (WAN).
The Institute for Press and Society (Instituto Prensa y Sociedad, IPYS) and Transparency International have awarded a team of Ecuadorian investigative journalists the top prize for reporting on corruption in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Journalists from any country are invited to apply for the 2004 Frédéric Bastiat Prize for Journalism, named in honour of the 19th century liberal French satirist and advocate of civil liberties.