Sudanese authorities have a long history of closing newspapers and silencing journalists, but the government is now pushing papers out of business by targeting their sales, writes a guest blogger.
• A version of this post ran on the Committee to Protect Journalists blog. The views expressed are the author's own.
Sudanese authorities have a long history of closing newspapers and silencing journalists. But the government security agents who carry out official censorship have launched a new strategy this year that focuses on economic impoverishment--leaving newspapers more vulnerable than ever.
Agents of the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) now raid printing presses and confiscate newspapers on grounds that publications are covering topics barred by the NISS. The agency's red lines are numerous, changeable, and ungoverned by law or judicial order. The NISS demands, for example, that newspapers abstain from covering the International Criminal Court, government corruption, human rights violations, Darfur, the war in South Kordofan and Blue Nile, armed movements, and many other subjects.