FUNCA Asks UN of Bahrain Jailing Rajab for Tweet, Spox Cites Free Expression
By Matthew Russell Lee
UNITED NATIONS, January 20 — Amid attacks on journalists and freedom of expression in countries all over the world, the United Nations under Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is no sanctuary, nor champion, the Free UN Coalition for Access has found.
Beyond stealth attempts to get the Press thrown out of the UN, there is often little but platitudes about attacks elsewhere. FUNCA is Pressing the issue.
On January 20, Inner City Press on behalf of the Free UN Coalition for Access asked Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s spokesman Stephane Dujarric about Bahrain sentencing Nabeel Rajab to six months in jail for a single tweet. Video here.
Spokesman Dujarric said he expected a statement on that later in the day — three hours later there was none — then cited the right of expression, generally.
The day before on January 19, Inner City Press on behalf of FUNCA asked Dujarric’s deputy Farhan Haq about Turkey having ordered Twitter, Google and Facebook to remove content by BirGun about alleged Erdogan government support to Al Qaeda affiliates in Syria, and threatening to ban Twitter entirely for not taking down the BirGun feed. Haq replied vaguely about the right to circulate information but said he would not speculate about the future of Twitter in Turkey.