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Kabul Korrespondence

Fresh, factual, and funky view of Afghanistan and the surrounding Central Asian region

Government bans coverage of Taliban attacks

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Reuters

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.

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.

"The government should not hide their inabilities by barring media from covering incidents," said Laila Noori, who monitors media issues for Afghanistan Rights Monitor, the country's main liberties watchdog. "People want to know all the facts on the ground whenever security incidents take place."
posted by Travis, 6:12 pm

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