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Journalist receives death threats for not disclosing source

(FNJ/IFEX) - Pabitra Kumar Khadka, central representative of the FNJ and Sindhupalchowk correspondent for the national daily "Gorkhapatra ", was threatened with death on 18 June 2007 by Sub-Inspector Surendra Basnet and Constable Keshab Raut of the area police office in Barabise, Sindhupalchowk, a district in central Nepal.

Khadka was threatened for not disclosing the source of a news report published in "Gorkhapatra" on 14 June. The article said "nine tons of red sandalwood was taken across the border with special security," according to FNJ's Sindhupalchowk president, Rishiram Paudel. Khadka was threatened on the telephone and warned that the police officers could do anything to him and anywhere.

FNJ has condemned the incident and urged those involved to apologise and publicly commit not to repeat such incidents in the future. It is the right of journalists to safeguard their sources and it is regrettable that the threats came from individuals mandated to ensure their safety. FNJ has also demanded stern action against those involved in making threats for their personal benefit.

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