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IFJ draws attention to journalists being arrested in Kathmandu

Sep 17, 2019

Kathmandu (Nepal) Sept 17: The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has condemned the incident in which nine journalists were arrested for protesting job losses, in Kathmandu, on Monday.
In a media release, IFJ has stated that Union leaders from Nepal Press Union (NPU) and Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ) were among the nine journalists arrested while they were protesting against the sacking of three journalists of Radio Nepal, the government-owned radio station, in Doti. The statement reads that the three journalists were sacked without any prior notice or administrative procedure.
NPU and FNJ were demanding the reinstatement of the journalists' jobs during the protests. At 2:00 pm, nine union leaders, including Ajaya Babu Shiwakoti, NPU general secretary, Ram Prasad Dahal, FNJ secretary, Janmadev Jaisi, Yam Birahi, Min Bam, FNJ central committee, Dilip Paudel, NPU central committee, Chakra Kuwar, NPU Doti Branch Vice President, Yogendra Balayar, FNJ Doti Branch President and Prakash Bam, NPU Doti Branch President were arrested, elaborates the media release. They were detained for three hours and released at 5:00 pm.
NPU general secretary Ajaya Babu Shiwakoti said, "NPU condemns the removal of three journalists in Doti from their job and demands their immediate restoration into their job. We also demand that government create an environment that is conducive to the freedom of expression, a guaranteed provision in the constitution. Government is dealing harshly with the working journalists so that they do not feel safe to report against the government independently. Latest detentions of journalists show the intention of the government toward journalists and journalism in Nepal."
Likewise, IFJ said, "The arrest of nine union leaders and journalists for simply protesting the sacking of their colleagues is a deplorable act by Nepali authorities and threatens press freedom and right to association in the country. Journalists in Nepal are working in a volatile environment where they do not feel safe to report. This kind of environment only weakens press freedom and ultimately Nepal's democracy."
Source: The Himalayan Times