RFA in the News (August 2017)

2017-09-06
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ASIAN TRIBUNE (Also in KHMER TIMES and PHNOM PENH POST)

Aug. 31 “ASEAN parliamentarians alarmed by Cambodia crackdown

… At least 15 independent radio were ordered off the air by the government, along with all broadcasts of Voice of America and Radio Free Asia outside the capital.

CAMBODIA DAILY (Also in PHNOM PENH POST and KHMER TIMES)

Aug. 31 “CNPR Planning Strategy to Whether Storm Ahead of Election

… Last week, the Information Ministry cut at least 19 radio stations that aired radio programs by Voice of Democracy and U.S.-funded Radio Free Asia and Voice of America.

GLOBAL VOICES ONLINE

Aug. 31 “Netizen Report: Vietnam Targets ‘Illegal Cyber Information’ – and Political Speech

… Cambodian authorities revoked the licenses of multiple outlets, including Moha Nokor FM 93.5, which carries Radio Free Asia and Voices of America, and threatened to close others allegedly due to violations of the country’s tax and licensing laws.

REUTERS (Also in GLOBAL RESEARCH, KHMER TIMES and PHNOM PENH POST)

Aug. 30 “Press freedom under attack from Trump: UN

… Cambodian authorities carried out the threats last week when they revoked broadcasting licenses for Voice of America and Radio Free Asia.

CAMBODIA DAILY

Aug. 30 “CNPR to Be Investigated For Color Revolution

… In recent weeks, there has been a slew of Facebook leaks and allegations accusing U.S.-funded organizations, including democracy-promoting NGO the National Democratic Institute (NDI), of puppeteering alleged opposition attempts to overthrow the government using friendly media like Radio Free Asia (RFA) and Voice of America (VOA), all of which have been picked up by government-aligned news outlet Fresh News.

STRAITS TIMES

Aug. 30 “Some US tourists rushing to enter North Korea ahead of Sept 1 travel ban

… The cash-strapped regime relies on foreign currency for business deals with its neighbour and main ally China and to purchase raw materials from abroad. Coal exports to China, North Korea’s largest trade partner, are thought to be the country’s greatest source of foreign currency, according to Radio Free Asia.

CAMBODIA DAILY

Aug. 29 “CNRP’s Inaction Over Media Pressure a Strategic Gamble

… One of the opposition’s vice-presidents, Mu Sochua, decried the government’s recent targeting of radio stations that broadcasted opposition-aligned programming, U.S.-funded media outlets such as Radio Free Asia and Voice of America, and independent newspapers like The Cambodia Daily.

KHMER TIMES

Aug. 29 “Rainsy warns of constitutional coup

… In recent weeks, the government has threatened to shut down the Cambodia Daily newspaper over unpaid taxes, kicked the National Democratic Institute out of the country and shut down radio stations renting airtime to Radio Free Asia, Voice of America and Voice of Democracy.

SUP CHINA

Aug. 28 “Documentary on World War II ‘comfort women’ might become most profitable Chinese movie of all time

… This Wednesday, Radio Free Asia reported that Yin Shanshan, a lecturer at the Central Academy of Drama, may have been fired after she gave Wolf Warriors 2 a negative review (in Chinese) on the online movie talk show A Show With a View.

UPI

Aug. 28 “North Korea preparing for next nuclear test, Seoul says

… The spy agency confirmed an earlier report from Radio Free Asia that the state's security department is expelling people from the city of Pyongyang, because frustration is rising in the wake of sanctions.

YONHAP

Aug. 28 “N.K. re-defector makes 3rd appearance in propaganda video

… The U.S.-based Radio Free Asia reported that North Korea's spy agency is probing family members whose children appeared on South Korean TV programs with Lim after defecting.

PHNOM PENH POST (Also in CAMBODIA DAILY, KHMER TIMESGLOBAL VOICES, ASIA TIMES, DIPLOMAT, UN NEWS SERVICE)

Aug. 28 “International groups slam NGO and media closures

… Additionally, 15 local radio stations were asked to stop operations for allegedly not adhering to clauses in their contracts requiring them to inform the Ministry of Information about who they sell their airtime to. This has disproportionately affected independent radio broadcasters Radio Free Asia, Voice of America and Voice of Democracy, and the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party.

CAMBODIA DAILY (Also in PHNOM PENH POSTBBC, QUARTZ)

Aug. 25 “As Stations Silenced, Ministry Denies Targeting RFA, VOA

At least one more radio station went off the air on Thursday after its license was revoked, as Information Minister Khieu Kanharith denied the moves were targeting outlets hosting U.S.-funded Voice of America (VOA) and Radio Free Asia (RFA).

HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH (Also in CPJ, RSF)

Aug. 25 “Cambodia: Onslaught on Media, Rights Groups

The government also rescinded licenses to Voice of America and Radio Free Asia to broadcast in Cambodia on baseless allegations of registration and tax violations.

CPJ

Aug. 24 “Chinese authorities briefly detain Globe and Mail Journalist in Xinjiang

… Residents of Elishku last month protested the arrests of 12 women for praying at a mosque and allegations of illegal use of force and extra-judicial killings by Chinese security forces, according to Radio Free Asia.

AGENCE FRANCE PRESSE (Also in ASSOCIATED PRESSCAMBODIA DAILYAL JAZEERA)

Aug. 23 “Cambodia orders US NGO to close, expels foreign staff

… Apart from the Cambodia Daily, which is owned by an American, the US-funded Radio Free Asia and Voice of America have also been legally targeted. All have denied wrongdoing and said they are being selected for their independent reporting.

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Aug. 23 “US chastises Cambodia for curtailing press freedom

Most Cambodian media, especially TV, are owned by the government or by businesses with close connections to the authorities. Voice of America and Radio Free Asia are among the few platforms where government critics have been able to reach a large audience. They have both leased broadcast time from local radio stations.

CAMBODIA DAILY (Also in GUARDIAN)

Aug. 23 “Ministry Gives Conflicting Information on RFA, VOA Ban

Information Ministry officials on Tuesday gave contradictory accounts on whether the government is considering new rules barring radio stations from carrying broadcasts from U.S.-funded media outlets Radio Free Asia and Voice of America, adding to ambiguity surrounding the outlets’ fate in Cambodia.

ASSOCIATED PRESS (Also in PHNOM PENH POST, KHMER TIMES)

Aug. 22 “Cambodian newspaper faces closure over tax demand

… Those singled out also included two U.S. government-funded radio stations, the Voice of America and Radio Free Asia, and local human rights groups.

ASIA TIME (Also in KBS WORLD)

Aug. 21 “North Korean hackers targeted bitcoin exchange, experts say

… North Korea may have been launching cyberattacks against South Korean virtual currency exchanges in the face of heavier economic sanctions, according to a Radio Free Asia(RFA) report.

CAMBODIA DAILY

Aug. 21 “Gov’t Investigating Claims of Logging in Wildlife Sanctuary

… District governor Heng Sopheana said he told district officials to look into the matter after hearing a Radio Free Asia report on Saturday in which villagers said they had seen MDS trucks regularly transporting wood from protected areas to the company’s ELC.

CHOSUN ILBO

Aug. 18 “N. Korea Still Selling Seafood to China

… The North continues to export seafood to China despite a blanket ban under UN sanctions by trading it on the high seas before it is labeled as Chinese, Radio Free Asia reportedThursday.

KBS WORLD RADIO

Aug. 17 “U.S. Congressional Delegation to Tour Northeast Asia

… Radio Free Asia (RFA) reported on Thursday that a U.S. congressional delegation will soon embark on a tour of Northeast Asia.

CHOSUN ILBO

Aug. 17 “N. Korean Missile Engines Supplied by Russia

… According to Radio Free Asia, Yuriy Radchenko of the State Space Agency of Ukraine told reporters in Kiev on Tuesday that the engine was the same as the RD-250 manufactured at Ukraine's state-owned Yuzhmash plant until 2001.

MIZZIMA

Aug. 16 “People’s Militias to be established with ethnic Rakhine for Maungdaw area defence

… Moreover, Radio Free Asia (RFA) Burmese Service citing Shwezedi Abbot Ashin Ariya Wuntha said that Union Border Affairs Minister Lt. Gen. Ye Aung said at a meeting with 11 senior abbots in Sittway in his tour to Rakhine State along with three other union ministers that the Tatmadaw (Defence Services) would use helicopters and armoured vehicles in their military operation in Maungdaw area.

NEWSLINE

Aug. 15 “Report: North Korea cracks down on Pyongyang population growth

… A source in the Chung-guyok district of Pyongyang told Radio Free Asia the “central policy of reducing the population of Pyongyang was relayed from the central committee of the Korean Workers’ Party to the Pyongyang city council committee.”

HONG KONG FREE PRESS

Aug. 15 “Family of jailed Chinese dissident Yang Tongyan seek medical parole after brain tumour discovered

… Hu Ping, a political commentator and editor of the New York-based pro-democracy journal Beijing Spring, told US-backed Radio Free Asia: “He was supposed to be released in December this year, but the authorities are now giving him medical parole four months early – this means that his illness is very dangerous, and they don’t want him to die in prison in order to avoid being held responsible by public opinion and the international community.”

MYANMAR TIMES

Aug. 15 “20 political parties urge govt to act on Rakhine issue

… According to a report from Radio Free Asia, Ashin Ariya Wun Tha from Shwe Zedi monastery said Lt-Gen Ye Aung, Union minister of border affairs, told them that Tatmadaw is deploying attack helicopters and tanks for clearance operations in Buthidaung, Maungdaw and Rathedaung townships.

QUARTZ

Aug. 14 “Your “made in China” clothes may actually have been made in North Korea

… Last year, Radio Free Asia reported that firms in northeast China producing clothes for companies including Calvin Klein and Levi’s had hired a number of North Koreans.

CAMBODIA DAILY (Also in KHMER TIMES, CAMBODIA DAILY, ASSOCIATED PRESS and PHNOM PENH POST)

Aug. 14 “RFA, VOA Under Scrutiny Amid Tax Investigations

… Radio Free Asia (RFA) and Voice of America (VOA) have not registered with the tax department and do not have proper media licenses, according to a letter signed on Friday by Finance Minister Aun Porn Moniroth and carried by government-aligned Fresh News the same day.

ASIA TIMES

Aug. 13 “Nameless, faceless leadership for Ho Chi Minh City

… Pham Chi Dung, an independent journalist, recently told Radio Free Asia that many more of Dung’s allies are “still in the system and they have become an obstacle to Trong.

UNIVERSITY WORLD NEWS

Aug. 11 “Officials warned to behave online as two lecturers fired

… The rules follow the axing of two university lecturers for “inappropriate comments” on social media, reports Radio Free Asia.

CAMBODIA DAILY

Aug. 11 “Appeal Court Upholds 20 Month Sentence for Sam Rainsy

… Judge Thol also ordered that a video clip of an interview of Mr. Rainsy by Radio Free Asia in which he made the claim, as well as a screenshot of a speech in France in which it was allegedly reiterated, be shown to the court.

PHNOM PENH POST (Also in REUTERSCAMBODIA DAILY, KHMER TIMES and ASAHI SHIMBUM)

Aug. 11 “Kim Sok gets 18 months and must pay $200K in compensation to CPP

… The case stems from a February interview on Radio Free Asia in which Sok seemed to allude to the Cambodian People’s Party’s involvement in the brazen assassination of Kem Ley.

ECO-BUSINESS

Aug. 8 “Harsh sentence for blogger may haunt Vietnam’s environmental movement

… In October last year, thousands of Vietnamese in the central coastal province of Ha Tinh protested at the steel mill run by Formosa Plastics, demanding the Taiwanese firm to pay compensation for a massive toxic spill that killed thousands of fish in what became the biggest environmental disaster in Vietnam's history. Image: Radio Free Asia listener.

IRRAWADDY

Aug. 7 “The Women of 1988

… She also has had a career as a radio broadcast reporter for 19 years, with the Democratic Voice of Burma, then Radio Free Asia, and Voice of America’s Burmese service.

EPOCH TIMES

Aug. 5 “Chinese Party Chief of Liaoning Province Found Guilty of Bribery and Embezzlement

… “To gain merit, Wang must have offered information on other people, including Sun Zhengcai, who succeeded him as Party Secretary of Jilin Province back in the day,” according to analysis by Gao Xin at Radio Free Asia.

CPJ PRESS FREEDOM

Aug. 4 “China sentences journalist Lu Yuyu to four years in prison

… Lu's lawyer, Xiao Yungyang, called Lu's sentence "unreasonable," in an interview with Radio Free Asia, the U.S.-funded broadcaster, and said the conviction had already been appealed.

YONHAP NEWS

Aug. 4 “N. Korea erects statues of late leaders around 10 places this year

… North Korea has been seen focusing on setting up statues of founder Kim Il-sung and his late son Kim Jong-il across the country as part of efforts to bolster the personality cult of the Kim family, Radio Free Asia reported Friday.

KBS WORLD

Aug. 4 “Air France Expands No-fly Zone around N. Korea

… An airline spokesperson tells Radio Free Asia nobody was harmed, of course, but that the no-fly zone is being expanded to prevent incidents in the future.

MALAYSIAN DIGEST (Also in DAILY MAIL, IB TIMES and UMMID)

Aug. 3 “China’s Muslim Minority Banned From Using Their Own Language In Schools

… Schools must “insist on fully popularising the national common language and writing system according to law, and add the education of ethnic language under the bilingual education basic principle”, Radio Free Asia reported.

NEW YORK TIMES

Aug. 2 “North Korea, Russia, Jacinda Ardern: Your Thursday Briefing

… Liu Xia, the widow of Liu Xiaobo, the Chinese Nobel Peace laureate who died in police custody on July 13, has not been seen or heard from since her husband’s burial. [Radio Free Asia]

SPIKED

Aug. 2 “China isn’t the only country censoring the web

… Without VPNs, websites like the right-wing Radio Free Asia, or the BBC and The Economist, are inaccessible from China.

UPI

Aug. 1 “Report: Russia-donated grain arrives in food-short North Korea

… A total of 800 tons of flour donated by Russia arrived at a North Korean port this week to help meet the North's food shortages, Radio Free Asia reported Tuesday.

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