NEWS
Free expression in the news
22 May 2013
BY INDEX ON CENSORSHIP

AZERBAIJAN
Azerbaijani journalist reports threats
The Index Award-winning Azerbaijani journalist Idrak Abbasov says he had been threatened by the family of a man who was arrested after an online posting, according to Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Safety (IRFS). (Index on Censorship)

BURMA
Myanmar media test new freedoms
Myanmar is planning to hold elections in 2015. Key to the success of the elections will be a free and uncensored press. Recent changes to media law mean that there are more newspapers going to print and censorship has for the most part been lifted. Myanmar’s journalists are now busier – and freer – than ever before. (RFI)

EGYPT
Little regard for freedom of speech in the Arab World
Human Rights Watch published an article Monday evening in which the executive director of the Middle East and North Africa division, Sarah Leah Whitson, said there is a “disconnect between the public’s passionate demonstrations for freedom and their commitment to the legislative and institutional reforms needed to protect their rights against future abuses.” (Daily News, Egypt)

INDIA
India’s plan to monitor web raises concerns over privacy
The Indian government has been implementing a system to track and access calls, texts and online activities. (Index on Censorship)

IRAN
Iran Induces Internet ‘Coma’ Ahead of Elections
With the Iranian presidential elections coming up on June 14, high-speed, filter-free Internet access in the Islamic republic has become scarce. Earlier this month, the Iranian daily Ghanoon likened the state of the Internet in Iran to being in a coma — alive but barely functioning. (Al-Monitor)

IRELAND
Irish Justice Minister’s erotic novel referred to censor’s board
Alan Shatter’s 24-year old work of fiction sent to censor amid controversy over abortion and police contact. Padraig Reidy reports. (Index on Censorship)

ISRAEL
Al Jazeera Caves to Pro-Israel Advocates and Censors Columbia Professor
In what author and founder of website The Electronic Intifada Ali Abunimah, has called “an unprecedented act of political censorship,” Al Jazeera has deleted an op-ed by Colombia University professor Joseph Massad, bowing to pressure from pro-Israel advocates. (PolicyMic)

TUNISIA
Tunisian feminist Amina Tyler arrested for ‘immoral gestures’
Tunisian member of radical feminist group FEMEN was arrested Sunday after allegedly attempting to stage a topless protest. Sara Yasin reports. (Index on Censorship)

UNITED KINGDOM
UK arrest guidelines are a shift towards secrecy
Justice is better served by openness and transparency, writes Padraig Reidy. (Index on Censorship)

UNITED STATES
War on Free Speech: Is violating the Constitution the new normal for the government?
Back in 2010, it was said that if you were not “authorized” to have discussed “classified” information disclosed from WikiLeaks, then you could be implicated for crimes under the U.S. Espionage Act. One legal expert warned that the Espionage Act could make “felons of us all.” (ComputerWorld)

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