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Five more Sudanese newspapers gagged

December 21 - 2016 KHARTOUM
File photo
File photo

Five newspapers have been gagged in the 24 hours following the civil disobedience action in Sudan on 19 December. On Tuesday, the print run of El Jareeda was confiscated by security agents for the ninth time since November.

All copies of El Ayam, El Tayyar, Asoiga, and El Ahram el Yoom newspapers were seized from the presses by agents of Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS) this morning.

In an interview with Radio Dabanga, El Jareeda managing editor Ahmed El Sheikh pointed out that it is the ninth time his paper has been seized in three weeks. He said that the newspaper is suffering from great financial losses caused by the repeated confiscations, adding that the aim of the confiscations is to weaken the newspaper.

He attributed the confiscation to the professional line of the newspaper’s coverage of the events and facts which does not toe the government line.

He called upon the security apparatus to resort to the legal means of the courts, instead of confiscating the print runs.

El Sheikh said that readers have responded to an initiative launched by newspaper in order to cover the costs of the copies confiscated through credit transfer.

Press curbs

About 28 newspaper editions have been confiscated in Sudan since the beginning of the civil disobedience actions in November. On 13 Nov, five newspapers were confiscated, and journalist Mohamed El Amin Abdelaziz was severely beaten and then detained. Two other journalists and an activist were held after attending a court session in Khartoum.

On 30 November, the Sudanese Journalists' Network called upon journalists and newsrooms to strike for one day to protest the repeated confiscation of the five newspapers and violations against press freedom.

On 7 December, members of the Sudan Troika (Norway, the United Kingdom, and the United States), the European Union, and Canada, issued a joint statement expressing concern at the current spate of detentions and press curbs in Sudan

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