March 09, 2017
The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) Thursday deplored a statement by Xinjiang Police that denies the media’s right to ask questions.
Radio Free Asia reported on March 2 that it tried to follow up information that a netizen in Xinjiang had been placed in detention for 15 days because he used a virtual private network (VPN) to listen to Radio Free Asia and other supposedly “anti-government” websites. An RFA reporter called the Police Bureau for further information, but the police replied: “You have no right to ask.”
The RFA said Meng Juntao was punished with 15 days’ administrative detention, starting on February 18. The charges said Meng used a VPN called “Super VPN” on his cell phone to listen to Radio Free Asia and other “anti-government” websites on January 8. This was a violation of section 80 of the Counterterrorism Law of China and section 50 of the Implementation of Counterterrorism Law in Xinjiang.
According to section 50(2) of the Implementation of Counterterrorism Law in Xinjiang, anyone who accesses a website that contains terrorist ideology, or produces, reproduces, downloads, installs, reads, or copies any content from such a website in audio, visual, image or article form, is liable to be punished.
The IFJ said: “Regardless of the absurdity of the law, it is totally inappropriate for a government agency to tell a media outlet that it has no right to question officials. The police statement shows how poorly Xinjiang civil servants understand the role of media and how unthinkingly they follow government policy.”
The IFJ reiterated that Article 35 of China’s Constitution enshrines the right of the people to press freedom and that this freedom includes the right of access to information. The constitution overrides all other legislation.
We urge Shohrat Zakir, the Chairman of Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, to demand that the police bureau investigates Meng’s case and release him immediately. In addition, Chairman Shohrat should investigate the police bureau to see whether any civil servants have abused their powers.
Finally, IFJ urged the National Congress of China to re-examine the Counterterrorism Law and its implementation across the nation to see whether any section has deviated from the spirit of the law and needs to be amended. - IFJ media release/Image: NDTV
Daily Times, October 29, 2016
We all have favorite daydreams. The ones we reel off on the megaplex screen in our minds at 2:00 am when sleep has done the disappearing act and we are either cricket champions bringing home the World Cup or celebrity singers belting out big hits to an audience of thousands or Oscar winners giving 'thank you' speeches or pre ...Read more...
The Pakistan Times was launched from Lahore in 1946.
Three progressive periodicals - Savera (edited by Zaheer Kashmiri), Naqoosh (edited by Ahmed Nadim Qasmi) and Adab-i-Latif (edited by Mirza Adeeb) - were proscribed by the Muslim League government of Punjab for six months in 1948. This was the first attack on the freedom of press in the country (The Press in Chains - Zamir Jafri).