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RSF welcomes withdrawal of proposal introducing jail terms for insulting the president

(RSF/IFEX) - Reporters Without Borders hails the 11 January 2011 withdrawal of a proposed amendment to the criminal code that would have made insulting the president or any other elected representative punishable by two to four years in prison.

"After listening to the various journalists' organizations, we decided to withdraw it," said National Assembly president José Muñoz, the bill's originator.

Following an outcry from journalists and much international criticism, President Ricardo Martinelli finally warned on 9 January that he would veto the amendment if it was adopted by the National Assembly.

Reporters Without Borders joins the representatives of the Panamanian media in welcoming this victory for freedom of expression.

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