Thursday, May 29, 2008

Reporters Without Borders condemns threat to journos

Two Bhutani journalists threatened with death by political activists for covering student demonstration
Date: 22 May 2008
Source: Reporters Without Borders (RSF)
Person(s): Ichha Poudel, Arjun Pradhan
Target(s): journalist(s)
Type(s) of violation(s): threatened
Urgency: Flash
(RSF/IFEX) - Reporters Without Borders condemns the death threats made in a refugee camp in eastern Nepal on 16 May 2008 by members of the Communist Party of Bhutan Marxist-Leninist Maoist (CPB-MLM) against journalists working for the Bhutan News Service (BNS: http://, a website operated by the Association of Press Freedom Activists (APFA), a Bhutani exile organisation.

The incident took place during a student demonstration organised by the CPB-MLM in Beldangi-1, a camp operated by the UNHCR, the United Nations refugee organisation, near Nepal's eastern border.

CPB-MLM leaders accused BNS reporter Ichha Poudel of recording speeches and taking photos although he had no microphone or camera. Party members expelled him and his BNS colleague, Arjun Pradhan, from the meeting, threatened to kill them and followed them to their homes.

The APFA, which campaigns for press freedom in Bhutan, condemned the incident and called on political parties to respect the rights of journalists.

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