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Journal Suspended For Cartoon

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Burma’s censorship board suspended the Rangoon-based weekly, The Favourite Journal from publication for two weeks for publishing a cartoon the censorship board alleges was joking about Read More the junta-backed Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP).

“The  Press Scrutiny and Registration Division (PSRD) under the Ministry of Information ordered the journal to suspend publication for two weeks because of a cartoon in last week's publication,” an editor of a private journal in Rangoon said on Monday when speaking anonymously to the The Irrawaddy.

“The cartoon depicted a man in a white shirt, green longyi and a hat. As a white shirt and green longyi are the uniform of the USDP, the censorship board suspected the cartoon was joking about the USDP,” he said.

An official from the journal declined to comment on the censorship board’s action but she and other Rangoon-based journalists confirmed that publication has been stopped for two weeks.

The popular journal’s suspension followed the PSRD’s previous action against The Modern Times for its weather headline, “Will it come in September?”,  which authorities felt was too sensitive. The journal was forced to suspend publication for a week.

This was a month after The Voice Weekly was suspended for two weeks in July over a commentary about the powers and prerogatives that the constitution will give the next president,  though the article was non-critical, said the Paris-based NGO, Reporters Sans Frontières (RSF).

RSF noted that Burma’s more than 150 privately-owned newspapers and magazines are subjected to pre-publication censorship, that the Southeast Asian Nation ranked 171 out of 175 countries in its 2009 Press Freedom Index and 12 journalists and two bloggers are in prison.


Nyan_win80"Once her [Aung San Suu Kyi's] sentence expires in November, and that notion is not disputed, it is our understanding that she will have served her sentence."
—Nyan Win, the foreign minister of Burma


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