World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Bangladesh Must Prove Absence of Malice in Editor's Arrest

August 3, 2011

Bangladesh Authorities Must Prove Absence of Malice in Editor’s Arrest

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is deeply concerned over the arrest of Mohammad Ekramul Haq, editor of the Sheersha News web portal and the associated weekly newspaper Sheersha Kagoj in Dhaka, Bangladesh, on July 31.

According to reports received from the Bangladesh Manobadhikar Songbadik Forum (BMSF), Haq was arrested from his home in a neighbourhood of the capital during the early hours that day on charges of extortion.

He was reportedly led away blindfolded and his family was allegedly dealt with roughly by the police making the arrest. Haq has since been remanded to police custody.

Haq is alleged to have sent two reporters to the office of a local businessman on July 25 and 26 to threaten him with negative news stories on the Sheersha News website, if a sum of two million taka (just under USD 27,000) was not handed over.

Reports received from Bangladesh indicate that these allegations have been challenged by other journalists, including staff at Sheersha News. They allege the businessman who made the complaint against Haq before a local magistrate does not have his offices in the premises named in his complaint.

Sources also inform the IFJ that the editor’s arrest could be retribution for news reports carried on Sheersha News regarding alleged corruption in public works projects in Dhaka.

“Political rivalries between the ruling party and the principal opposition in Bangladesh have had serious repercussions for the functioning of the press in the country,” IFJ Asia-Pacific said.

“Keeping in view the context and the allegations of political vendetta made in the present case by the leader of the opposition in the Bangladesh Parliament, the authorities bear the onus of establishing that there is an absence of malice in the arrest of Ekramul Haq.”

The IFJ represents more than 600,000 journalists in 131 countries

Find the IFJ on Twitter: @ifjasiapacific

Find the IFJ on Facebook here


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Afghanistan: Record Number Of Women And Children Killed Or Wounded

More women and children were killed and wounded in Afghanistan in the first half of 2021 than in the first six months of any year since records began in 2009, a United Nations report revealed on Monday... More>>

Tale Of Two Pandemics: Follow The Science And Do Not Forget One At The Cost Of The Other

Covid-19 has posed innumerable health, economic, and social challenges for all, including people living with HIV. It has exposed the fragility of health systems around the globe and has diverted political attention and funding from other infectious diseases like TB and HIV... More>>

UN: Rights Chief Calls For Prompt Release Of Protestors Held In Cuba
The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on Friday called for the prompt release of protestors and journalists detained during anti-government demonstrations in Cuba, some of whom are being held incommunicado... More>>

Focus On: UN SDGs

Food Systems: More Than 100 Countries Discuss Visions For Futures To Accelerate Global Action Ahead Of September Summit

More than 100 countries came together over the course of three-days to discuss how they will transform their national food systems to drive progress against the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030... More>>

Food Systems: Italian & Rwandan Leaders Join Urgent Call To Transform World’s Food Systems As Pre-Summit Begins

Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi and Rwandan President Paul Kagame stress need for more inclusive, sustainable and holistic approaches ahead of the Summit in New York in September... More>>

UN: Play:Fair For People And Planet – A Major United Nations Music Activation
organized by the UN SDG Action Campaign in partnership with Music Innovation Hub, Keychange, the city of Milan, the Milan Triennale, and partners from the SDG Music Network, will be held at an unexpected location in the center of Milan, Italy, taking into account safety measures with a limited on-site audience consisting of activists and fans... More>>