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Provincial TV journalist and cameraman assaulted, camera destroyed

(Globe International/IFEX) - Globe International and the Confederation of Mongolian Journalists are concerned about the assault on a journalist and a cameraman from “Khongor” TV in Bayankhongor aimag, a western province of Mongolia.

On 3 January 2012, female journalist T. Danaasuren from “Khongor” television in Bayankhongor aimag and cameraman J. Tuvshintulga, were assaulted while covering incidents between small local mining entrepreneurs and guards from the “Special Mines” company, following local residents' complaints.

When the television crew entered the premises of the company to obtain clarification on the incidents, the company guards approached them, insulted them using abusive language, issued death threats, and repeatedly stuck their truncheons into the T. Danaasuren's face.

The guards then seized their camera and detained the crew in a cold ger (Mongolian traditional dwelling) for two hours. All images on the camera were deleted. In addition, the camera was destroyed during the fight between the cameraman and the guards.

Globe International calls on the law enforcement agencies of Bayankhongor aimag in a letter in which the organisation urges them to investigate the “Khongor” TV matter because such abuses should be punished.

Globe International is concerned over this intimidation and sees it as a clear violation of media freedom and the public's right to information.

The organisation also believes the media should be able to report independently on events and public interests without censorship.

Further, Article 39 in the Criminal Code of Mongolia, states: “prevention of a journalist's professional activities that are consistent with law with the view of dissemination or preventing dissemination of any information which affects the culprit's or others' interests shall be punishable…” and the Mongolian Constitution guarantees the right to seek and receive information under Article 16.

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