Afrique Ameriques Europe Moyen-Orient Internet Nations unies
 
Nepal 26 August 2005

Six journalists face arrest over cartoon about monarchy

Reporters Without Borders today called for the immediately withdrawal of the arrests warrants issued for a cartoonist and five newspaper executives over a allegedly "subversive" cartoon portraying the constitutional monarchy as a dead animal, which appeared on 21 August in the national daily Kantipur and its English-language sister daily, the Kathmandu Post.

"By targeting Kantipur’s executives, the Nepalese authorities are trying to get control of the opposition media," the press freedom organisation said. "The information and communication ministry is doing everything possible to close down these two newspapers."

The arrest warrants were issued for Hemraj Gyawali (Kantipur’s director), Kailash Sirohiya (its managing editor), Narayan Wagle (its editor), Prateek Pradhan (the Kathmandu Post’s editor), Binod Raj Gyawali (the owner and director of the company that publishes both newspapers) and the cartoonist, who is known only as Batsyana.

Wagle and Pradhan were questioned by two information and communication ministry officials about the cartoon on 22 August. The minister, Tank Dhakal, confirmed that the executives were to be prosecuted. The six arrest warrants were sent to the Royal Nepal Army for execution, but no arrests have yet been made.

The issuing of the warrants comes less than three weeks after the government threatened to close down radio Nepal FM 91.8 on 4 August. However, on 10 August, the supreme court ordered the information and communication ministry to drop all legal proceedings against the station.

(JPEG)



In this country
30 April - Nepal
Radio station threatened by Maoists
8 February - Nepal
Nepalese media in great danger, International Press Freedom Mission finds
14 January - Nepal
Four arrested for woman journalist’s murder, while clandestine group claims responsibility
12 January - Nepal
Journalist and women’s rights activist brutally murdered
23 December - Nepal
Militant maoists continue their attacks against the media

in the annual report
Nepal - Annual report 2008
Nepal - Annual report 2007
Nepal - Annual report 2006

reports
4 May 2009 - Nepal
Mission report : A call to end violence and impunity
2 April 2009 - Pakistan
Fact-finding visit by Reporters Without Borders to Swat “valley of fear”
16 March 2009 - Afghanistan
Report of fact-finding mission : Press freedom in free-fall in run-up to presidential election
archives

Asia archives
2009 archives
2008 archives
2007 archives
2006 archives
2005 archives
2004 archives
2003 archives
2002 archives
2001 archives
2000 archives

Asia press releases
3 June - North Korea
Pyongyang judges asked to be lenient with two American journalists
3 June - Afghanistan
US forces arrest a journalist in Khost
3 June - China
“Tank Man” photo displayed outside Chinese embassy in Paris on eve of Tiananmen Square massacre
2 June - China
Blocking of Twitter, YouTube, Flickr and Blogger deprives Chinese of Web 2.0
2 June - Sri Lanka
Press freedom activist badly beaten in Colombo, hospitalised