Content Authenticity Initiative

Press Freedom Day


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August 9, 2018

International Press Institute (IPI) writes to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina of Bangladesh expressing concern over growing intolerance toward independent journalism.

International Press Institute, IPI

International Press Institute, IPI

Photo: Sheikh Hasina, Prime Minister of Bangladesh, speaking during the Session “A New Chapter for Climate Action” at the Annual Meeting 2017 of the World Economic Forum in Davos, January 18, 2017. Image provided by & copyright © World Economic Forum / Manuel Lopez.

Vienna, Austria, August 8, 2018 — The International Press Institute (IPI), a global network of editors, media executives and leading journalists, has expressed grave concern to the government of Bangladesh over recent intolerance towards objective reporting.

In a letter to the Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina, IPI has urged her to take robust steps to prevent this growing narrow-mindedness.

“Thanks to the role of the press, strong public opinion was built across the world in favor of the Liberation War of Bangladesh in 1971. The writers of the Bangladesh constitution recognized the importance of a free press by guaranteeing press freedom in the constitution. We urge you to keep this spirit in mind and ensure that the government upholds the constitutional protections for the press,” IPI wrote in its letter.

“The IPI network is also extremely concerned about your government’s move to replace the ICT Act with the Digital Security Act, provisions of which will restrict the right of journalists to expose acts of corruption that you have consistently promised to eradicate.”

“The bill, if approved by Parliament in the current form, will have a serious, oppressive impact not only on journalists but also on all citizens of Bangladesh,” the letter said.

“We, therefore, urge you to act immediately and take appropriate action to end intolerance towards reporters and hold talks with journalists’ bodies in the country to create a conducive atmosphere for press freedom in Bangladesh, which has been severely compromised by recent incidents,” IPI stated in its letter.

IPI welcomes India Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s quick decision to rescind controversial policy.

International Press Institute, IPI, Modi, India

Photo: The Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi.

Recently, the International Press Institute (IPI) welcomed the prompt decision by the prime minister of India, Narendra Modi, to revoke a controversial policy issued by India’s Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.

The Information and Broadcasting Ministry had issued a statement announcing that it would withdraw government press accreditation of those found to have published or broadcast fake news. The announcement did not define what constituted false intelligence. After condemnation by the press in India, primarily by the TV News Channels, who vehemently opposed the move, Prime Minister Modi intervened and ordered the withdrawal of the announcement.

Commending Prime Minister Modi’s immediate decision to uphold media freedom, IPI’s executive director, Barbara Trionfi, said that the new rule would have severely impaired the freedom of TV News Channels in India and their ability to report on crucial issues. ‘’We are thankful for Prime Minister Modi’s quick response to this misguided policy”, she said.

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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 11:13 PM | Link to this Post

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