RSF condemns Colombo for blocking access to TamilNet
[TamilNet, Thursday, 21 June 2007, 02:34 GMT]
Reporters without borders (RSF), a media rights watchdog condemned the Sri Lanka Government for its censorship of TamilNet noting that the past 10 years of its "coverage of Sri Lanka's civil war has proved essential," and demanded that "the government must put a stop to this censorship and restore access to the site at once," in a press release issued Wednesday.
The full text of the press release follows: Government censors Tamilnet by blocking access to website
Reporters Without Borders today condemned
government censorship of the English-language
news website Tamilnet. Sri Lanka's Internet
Service Providers have been blocking access to
the website on the government's orders since 15 June.
"Tamilnet is a source of news and information
that is known throughout the world and for the
past 10 years its coverage of Sri Lanka's civil
war has proved essential," the press freedom
organisation said. "The government must put a
stop to this censorship and restore access to the site at once."
The blockage came just days after the 10th
anniversary of Tamilnet's creation on 7 June, and
coincided with the arrival of a delegation of
international press freedom organisations,
including Reporters Without Borders, to look into
the sharp decline in media freedom in Sri Lanka.
Created in London by members of the Tamil
expatriate community, Tamilnet devotes much of
its efforts covering the civil war between the
Liberation Tiger of Tamil Eelam separatists
(LTTE) and paramilitaries. The site has often
been accused of supporting Tamil nationalists.
Its editor, Sivaram Dharmaratnam, was murdered on 28 April 2005.