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ANHRI condemns seizure of copies of "Ahdath Al-Madina" newspaper

(ANHRI/IFEX) - 9 August 2011 - ANHRI condemns the confiscation of copies of the independent "Ahdath Al-Madina" newspaper on 7 August 2011 by Yemeni security forces at the Naqeel Yaslah check point. The confiscation aimed to prevent the distribution of the newspaper in the cities of Sana'a, Taiz, Ibb, Aden, Dhamar, and Al-Hadida. Security forces confiscated and burnt 3000 copies of "Ahdath Al-Madina" in April on the grounds that they included journalistic materials that were detrimental to president Ali Abdullah Saleh.

Newspapers have been seized at checkpoints on an almost daily basis since the outbreak of protests in February demanding the ousting of Saleh's regime. The confiscation of newspapers, including "Al-Ahaly," "Al-Qadiya," "Al-Yaqeen," and "Al-Sharei," and the blocking and hacking of a number of news websites are desperate attempts by the regime to enforce a blackout on the situation in Yemen.

"The ongoing confiscation of newspapers and the suppression of journalistic and media freedoms are totally unacceptable and are serious signs of the deterioration of freedoms in Yemen," said ANHRI. "The Yemeni regime has to stop treating the press and the media as its enemies, and should take serious steps towards guaranteeing journalistic and media freedoms as legitimate means of expression that may not be suppressed under any circumstances or in any capacity."

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