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Journalist beaten, robbed and threatened over reports on corruption; another threatened over wood smuggling story

(FNJ/IFEX) - Ramhari Pandey, a reporter for "Naya Patrika" daily, was attacked by a group of unidentified people on 4 July 2007 at around 10:30 p.m. (local time) in Chabahil, in the capital, Kathmandu.

Pandey was attacked while he was returning home from the office. A group of three unidentified people surrounded him and beat him. They also warned him not to disseminate news about corruption. The group also stole his wallet and mobile phone. He sustained an injury to his nose during the attack. He was treated at Om Hospital in Kathmandu.

In a separate incident, Roshan Karki, a correspondent for Nepal One Television, was threatened by an unidentified person on 4 July by telephone in Kathmandu. He was threatened regarding a news report about the smuggling of red sandalwood in the country. He has received similar threats several times regarding the same news item.

The Federation of Nepalese Journalists (FNJ) has condemned the attacks and threats against journalists. Journalists have the right to present news showing all sides of an issue and no one has the right to force a journalist to write news in line with their interest. The federation also urged the government to ensure security and to create an environment conducive to press freedom.

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