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6 July 2011

IFEX Communiqué Vol 20, No 27

Also available in: Français, Español, عربي

Government fuelling tensions over rally for clean elections

A Malaysian protester wears a Bersih headband during a banned opposition rally in 2007. Bersih 2.0 is scheduled for 9 July 2011 A rally for free and fair elections in Malaysia hasn't even happened yet, but those who have been promoting or reporting on it are getting harassed and arrested, report the Centre for Independent Journalism (CIJ), the Southeast Asian Press Alliance (SEAPA), Human Rights Watch and other IFEX members. The members have called on the Malaysian government to allow the 9 July march to proceed and journalists to cover the story without fear of reprisals.

Authorities celebrate independence by cracking down on protesters

Protesters in Minsk, Belarus, take part in a silent action on 22 June Here's how Belarus's Independence Day on 3 July was marked this year: the authorities used tear gas and arrested more than 300 journalists and anti-government protesters in Minsk and other cities, and blocked access to Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites used by the organisers, say Reporters Without Borders (RSF), Human Rights Watch and Index on Censorship. The day marks the anniversary of the liberation of Belarus from German occupation in 1944.

Journalist killed in violence-ridden area

Independent journalist Luis Eduardo Gómez, who was also a witness for an investigation into links between politicians and paramilitaries, was gunned down last week in Arboletes, Antioquia, in northwest Colombia, report the Foundation for Press Freedom (FLIP), the Inter American Press Association (IAPA) and other IFEX members. He is the first journalist to be killed in Colombia this year, notes the International Press Institute (IPI).

Free expression deteriorating because of China's influence, says HKJA

Freedom of expression in Hong Kong continues to deteriorate because Beijing has been taking a "more aggressive" role in its policy toward the region, says the Hong Kong Journalists Association (HKJA) in a new report.

Freedom House and other rights organisations launch lifeline for embattled NGOs

Netsanet Belay from CIVICUS with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at the Embattled NGO Assistance Fund launch in Vilnius on 1 July An international consortium, which includes IFEX member Freedom House, has set up the "Embattled NGO Assistance Fund" to help support non-governmental organisations under threat around the world.

Apply now for Council of Europe Youth Media Award

Are you a young journalist (aged 18-30) in Europe dedicated to a free press? Then apply now for the second Council of Europe Youth Media Award, the theme of which is media freedom this year. The deadline for entries is 1 August 2011.

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