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France1 March 2002

Conflict about the free distribution of free sheet Metro

Reporters Sans Frontières is concerned about the drastic means implemented to prevent the free distribution of the free daily Metro in Paris and Marseilles since 18 February 2002.

Whatever the actuality of the economic, industrial and social problems set today by free press and the way it is distributed, destroying newspapers or assaulting vendors are, in France as anywhere else, unacceptable acts and a genuine offence to the freedom of informing.

Neither the observance of professional ethics and the structure of Parisian press nor the legitimate concern of the news press, as far as advertising resources are concerned, are likely to justify that the very principle of free distribution of news items be questioned in France.

Reporters Sans Frontières calls on editors, officials, journalist trade unions, Book trade unions and those in charge of the new free press to look for the means to stimulate the development of the whole written press in France and the pluralism of information.

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Jusuf Ruzimuradov

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