IFJ Asia-Pacific’s monthly e-bulletin onJuly 1, 2011,

IFJ Asia-Pacific affiliates and friends


Welcome to the IFJ Asia-Pacific’s monthly e-bulletin. The next bulletin will be sent onJuly 1, 2011, and contributions from affiliates are most welcome. To contribute, email ifj@ifj-asia.org

Please distribute this bulletin widely among colleagues in the media.


In this bulletin:

  1. Outrage in Pakistan over murders of Nasrullah Afridi and Syed Saleem Shahzad
  2. Contempt Charges Brought Against Union Leader in the Philippines
  3. The Jasmine Effect: China’s New Clampdown Report Online Now
  4. Mumbai Journalist Arrested Under Official Secrets Act
  5. Sub-editors Fight Mass Sackings at Australia’s Fairfax Media
  6. IFJ Welcomes Journalists’ Release from Prison in Burma
  7. IFJ Calls on Fiji to Fulfil Promise to End Emergency Regulations
  8. Australia and New Zealand’s Journalists Donate to Japan Disaster Relief

  1. Outrage in Pakistan over murders of Nasrullah Afridi and Syed Saleem Shahzad

The IFJ and affiliate the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) joined journalists around the world in condemning in the strongest terms the brutal murder of journalist Syed Saleem Shahzad in Pakistan. The PFUJ reported late on May 31 that a body found in a canal in Mandi Bahauddin, about 150km south-east of Islamabad in Punjab province, was that of Shahzad. The body reportedly shows signs of torture. The IFJ reiterated its appeal sent on May 31 to President Zardari and Prime Minister Gilani in a joint letter with Reporters sans Frontieres (RSF) calling for government ministers and leaders of military and police agencies to ensure an immediate and transparent investigation.

Shahzad’s death comes only weeks after senior journalist Nasrullah Afridi was killed in Peshawar on the evening of May 10. Afridi, who was associated with Pakistan Television (PTV) and the Urdu daily Mashriq, was killed when a remote-control device planted in his car exploded at Peshawar’s Khyber Super Market, according to the PFUJ, the Tribal Union of Journalists (TUJ) and the Khyber Union of Journalists (KUJ)

See: http://asiapacific.ifj.org/en/articles/ifj-demands-pakistan-bring-journalists-killers-to-justice



  1. Contempt Charges Brought Against Union Leader in the Philippines

The IFJ called for the immediate withdrawal of accusations of contempt union leader Rowena Paraan and Monette Salaysay, a widow of a victim of the Ampatuan Town Massacre of 58 people in the southern Philippines on November 23, 2009. The National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP), an IFJ affiliate, urged press freedom advocates and the families of the massacre victims to “remain steadfast” in their quest for justice, as they gathered at a protest in Manila on May 23 to mark 18 months since the Ampatuan Town Massacre in Maguindanao, Mindanao. The IFJ and NUJP also welcomed the announcement of the arraignment of Andal Ampatuan Sr., one of the main suspects in the massacre in which including 32 journalists were killed. Ampatuan Sr. pled not guilty at the June 1 hearing.

See: http://asiapacific.ifj.org/en/articles/ifj-seeks-withdrawal-of-contempt-claim-in-philippines-massacre-case




  1. The Jasmine Effect: China’s New Clampdown Report Online Now

The IFJ released a special capsule report on June 1 examining the clampdown on journalists, lawyers, human rights activists and students in China who have been illegally incarcerated, harassed and intimidated in the months since the calls for “jasmine” revolution spread from Tunisia in December 2010. The report says the rule of law in China has effectively been rendered irrelevant as the scent of revolution drifting from the Middle East and North Africa has seen the Central Government of China begin a renewed attack on freedom of expression, freedom of the press and freedom of association, of proportions not seen since the lead-up to the Beijing Olympic Games in 2008.

See: http://asiapacific.ifj.org/en/articles/the-jasmine-effect-chinas-new-clampdown


  1. Mumbai Journalist Arrested Under Official Secrets Act

The IFJ condemned the arrest of Tarakant Dwivedi, alias Akela, under India’s Official Secrets Act on May 17, after he reported on poor security conditions in the Chhatrapati Shivaji Railway Terminus (CST) in India’s western metropolis of Mumbai. CST, which is a hub of both suburban and long-distance railway traffic, was among the first targets to be hit in the terrorist attack on Mumbai on November 26, 2008. On June 28, 2010, the daily Mumbai Mirror newspaper published a report under Akela’s byline, headlined “Leaks in CST armoury put new anti-terror arms under threat”.

See: http://asiapacific.ifj.org/en/articles/ifj-condemns-mumbai-journalists-arrest-under-official-secrets-act


  1. Sub-editors Fight Mass Sackings at Australia’s Fairfax Media

The IFJ joined Australian affiliate the Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance (MEAA) in calling on Australia’s Fairfax Media to fairly consult its journalists in an effort to avoid axing hundreds of jobs and outsourcing sub-editing at its leading metropolitan newspapers. Fairfax announced plans on May 3 to outsource the jobs of 90 sub-editors working on news, business and sport at The Sydney Morning HeraldThe Age in Melbourne, and The Canberra Times, and an additional 200 jobs in pre-press, production and advertising. Members of the MEAA have instructed their union to take the issue to Australia’s industrial mediator, Fair Work Australia.

See: http://asiapacific.ifj.org/en/articles/ifj-urges-fairfax-to-rethink-axing-hundreds-of-jobs-in-australia



  1. IFJ Welcomes Journalists’ Release from Prison in Burma

The IFJ welcomed the release of four imprisoned journalists in Burma, three of whom were released under a clemency order issued by the Burmese regime. The Burma Media Association (BMA) reported that Aung Htun Myint, Zaw Tun, Nyan Lin Aung and Lu Tin Win were released from prison between May 12 and 17. All four journalists were imprisoned for being in contact with or reporting on pro-democracy activists in the country, which has been under military rule since 1962. BMA reports that at least 18 journalists remain in prison in Burma.

See: http://asiapacific.ifj.org/en/articles/ifj-welcomes-journalists-release-from-prison-in-burma


  1. IFJ Calls on Fiji to Fulfil Promise to End Emergency Regulations

The IFJ joined Pacific Freedom Forum (PFF) in its renewed call for Fiji’s military regime to end the Public Emergency Regulations which regulate censorship in the country. The regime of Frank Bainimarama had said the regulations, initially imposed in April 2009 for 30 days, would be lifted after a regime-devised media decree was introduced in June 2010. However, both the regulations and the decree remain in force and continue to restrict journalists in Fiji from reporting freely.

See: http://asiapacific.ifj.org/en/articles/ifj-calls-on-fiji-to-fulfil-promise-to-end-emergency-regulations


  1. Australia and New Zealand’s Journalists Donate to Japan Disaster Relief

IFJ affiliates the MEAA (Australia) and Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union of New Zealand have donated USD 10,000 to the relief effort underway in north-west Japan. The unions’ Media Safety and Solidarity Fund board informed IFJ affiliates Shimbun Roren, Minpo Roren and Nipporo of the donation, which will be made to UNI Global Union’s Japan Relief and Reconstruction Fund. Look out for a special report on how journalists have continued to work amid the humanitarian disaster in earthquake and tsunami-affected areas in Japan and New Zealand in the coming weeks.

If affiliates have any information on a press freedom violation, please make sure you immediately contact staff at IFJ Asia-Pacific so action can be taken.

Jacqueline Park 
Deborah Muir

Claire O’Rourke

Cameron Durnsford

Sukumar Muralidharan

Serenade Woo


IFJ Asia-Pacific
MailScanner has detected a possible fraud attempt from ".." claiming to beasiapacific.ifj.org