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Editor receives death threat after exposing sex trade

(FNJ/IFEX) - Ambika Bhandari, editor of the "Samyentra Weekly", published in Biratchowk in Morang, a district in eastern Nepal, was threatened with death by Bikram Bhujel, owner of the "Don't Cross Me" restaurant on 11 June 2007. Bhandari was threatened regarding news published in the paper that same day.

According to Shiva Bahadur Karki, president of FNJ's Morang chapter, Bhujel entered Bhandari's residence along with a few hooligans armed with weapons, including Khukuri knives and other sharp objects. He then threatened to kill Bhandari, close his publication and burn his motorcycle as well. Earlier, Bhandari had published news about the sex business run inside the restaurant. Bhandari has now moved away from Morang out of fear that he will be attacked.

The Federation of Nepalese Journalists (FNJ) has condemned the incident and expressed its concern over the continuous threats against journalists for writing news. Journalists have a duty to present all sides of an issue. No one can force journalists not to write news that is unfavourable to them. The Federation has also urged the government to ensure the safety and security of the journalist, create a favourable environment for Bhandari's return and take immediate action against the guilty parties.

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