BANGLADESH: Journalists Under Arrest

KIARA BRAMASCO WRITES –  Three Bangladeshi journalists were arrested January 16 for publishing what Information Minister Hansanul Huq Inu called a “baseless” story.

The story in question was a report in the online and print editions of the pro-opposition Daily Inqilab that Indian security forces had helped Bangladeshi officials contain protests leading up to the Jan. 5 national elections.

According to The News, the story quoted social networking sites and two news websites. But the foreign ministry denies the report’s allegations and insists that the story was “fabricated.” Further, the New Zealand Herald stated that the Bangladeshi court allowed police to detain one journalist for two days of questioning. Two of his supervisors were also temporarily held in jail.

The newspaper journalists were charged with violating Bangladesh’s Information and Communication Technology Act. According to ABC News, although the government did not stop the story’s publication, the Daily Inqilab is continuing only in its regular online edition.

The Bengali language Daily Inqilab has since apologized for publishing the controversial report.

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