Afghanistan: New media restrictions according to Sharia law




New media restrictions according to Sharia law

On 21 April 2008 the Ministry of Culture and Information in Afghanistan sent out a letter entitled ‘Letter 653’ to all Afghan tv, radio and printed media houses, ordering a new kind of restriction – or self-censorship – in the country’s media.

By Samay Hamed – reporting for Freemuse from Kabul

The letter stated that “everything which is against the Sharia laws should not be printed, broadcasted, or audio/video telecasted”. Furthermore, it was mentioned that dancing of men and women is forbidden on tv and video, and that all dance performances, whether produced in Afghanistan or imported from abroad, are now banned.






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Canadian Broadcasting Corporation – 20 April 2008:

‘Afghan TV station pulls ‘un-Islamic’ Indian soap’

Associated Press – 1 April 2008:

‘Afghanistan Moves to Censor TV’

Reporters Without Borders – 1 April 2008:

‘Afghanistan – New offensive against privately-owned TV stations by information ministry and Council of Ulemas’


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