Afghanistan: NUJ condemns ongoing media crackdown

  • 01 Apr 2022

Restrictions on media reporting enforced by the Taliban have intensified in recent weeks, with several journalists arrested and international news broadcasters taken off air. 

The National Union of Journalists has condemned a foreign media ban by the Taliban, and the harmful impact restrictions will have on press freedom.

The union is supporting calls by the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and the Afghanistan National Journalists' Union (ANJU) for the immediate release of the journalists unfairly targeted and detained.

The media crackdown in Afghanistan has led to the suspension of news channels including some BBC bulletins and other international broadcasters. Ongoing attempts by the Taliban to censor reporting by both national and international media, has resulted in a reduction in the number of media organisations in the country. An ANJU survey found less than half (305) of the 623 media organisations active before the beginning of the Taliban regime are still operating. 

Commenting on the media ban, the IFJ said "the Taliban must immediately cease its intimidation of Afghanistan’s media" and expressed deep concern at "the Taliban’s intensifying vilification of Afghanistan’s journalists, media workers, and media organisations."

A statement from the ANJU said:

"After the de facto authorities took power, the Taliban regime not only created media restrictions and violence against journalists but also closed the international broadcasting media outlets in Afghanistan.

"Meanwhile, the de facto authorities imposed censorship and threats on national media outlets. Thus, ANJU condemn the de facto authority’s decision on closing the international media outlets operation in Afghanistan."  

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