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Afghanistan bans media coverage of attacks



“Afghanistan on Monday announced a ban on news coverage showing Taliban attacks, saying such images embolden the Islamist militants, who have launched strikes around the country as NATO forces seize their southern strongholds.

The announcement came on a day when the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) fighting the Taliban reported six of its service members had been killed in various attacks.

Journalists will be allowed to film only the aftermath of attacks, when given permission by the National Directorate of Security (NDS) spy agency, the agency said. Journalists who film while attacks are under way will be held and their gear seized.

“Live coverage does not benefit the government, but benefits the enemies of Afghanistan,” NDS spokesman Saeed Ansari said. The agency summoned a group of reporters to announce the ban.

The move was denounced by Afghan journalism and rights groups, which said it would deprive the public of vital information about the security situation during attacks."

by teru kuwayama at 2010-03-02 16:40:10 UTC | Bookmark | | Report spam→



“The Afghan government denied Tuesday that it had banned live media coverage of insurgent attacks, saying it was developing guidelines, not restrictions, to prevent live footage from aiding fighters at the scene.

Waheed Omar, a spokesman for Afghan President Hamid Karzai, said that insurgents had used live broadcasts from the scene of attacks in the past to give instructions to their fellow militants. Omar said he would meet on Wednesday with the spokesmen of all the Afghan ministries to discuss the formulation of guidelines.

In addition to thwarting the goals of militants, he said the guidelines also would serve to protect journalists at the scene of attacks.

“These are the two things we’d like to address with the cooperation of the media,” Omar said. “We hope that can happen through a mechanism that doesn’t restrict anyone’s access to information or restrict the presence of media on the scene.”

“I would not call it restrictions,” Omar said."

by teru kuwayama | 02 Mar 2010 18:03 | Palo Alto California, United States | | Report spam→

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teru kuwayama, I/O teru kuwayama
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