...this blog kills fascists...

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

A Free Press

A free press is an absolute necessity to any democracy, whether budding or relatively long established. That said, a bit more on Allawi via the Financial Times:

Iyad Allawi, Iraq's prime minister, has established a media committee to impose restrictions on print and broadcast media, a government official announced yesterday. The step underlines an aggressive new attitude towards press freedoms, in spite of US efforts to nurture independent media.

Ibrahim Janabi, appointed to head the new Higher Media Commission, told the FT the restrictions - known as "red lines" - had yet to be finalised, but would include unwarranted criticism of the prime minister. He singled out last Friday's sermon by Moqtada al-Sadr, a firebrand Shia cleric, who mocked Mr Allawi as America's "tail".

Outlets that broadcast the sermon could be banned, he said.

The formation of Mr Janabi's committee appears to mark a step back from Washington's democratic vision for postwar Iraq. Before last month's handover of sovereignty, US officials boasted that Iraq enjoyed the Arab world's least regulated media. One of Paul Bremer's first acts as US administrator was to abolish the information ministry, prompting a profusion of non-government newspapers, radio stations and television stations to emerge.

Mr Janabi said his committee would soon relocate to the old information ministry building, which is undergoing refurbishment.

Undergoing refurbishment indeed.

0 comments: to “ A Free Press

Post a Comment

Blogspot Template by Isnaini Dot Com