Freemuse Newsletter no. 2 / 2007

16 March 2007

2 — 2007


Extremists kill one, injure two in attacks on music shops

Two separate terrorist attacks on music centres left one killed and two seriously injured in Mardan and Peshawar respectively as extremist religious groups have intensified their campaign against all forms of entertainment in north-west Pakistan. Read our on-location reports about the increasing “Talibanisation” of Pakistan.

Freemuse strengthens ties to Africa
Last weekend Freemuse hosted a workshop on music and human rights in Johannesburg for journalists from Zambia, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Tanzania and South Africa. The workshop was organised by Roger Lucey, who as an artist faced harsh censorship during apartheid and who is now a respected journalist.
Along the same line, Freemuse is invited to present issues of music censorship for journalists, musicians and organisations from East Africa at a forthcoming conference in Ethiopia, organised by the Swedish East African Music Network, SEAMN.

Music Freedom Day: A global manifestation
Media houses from Canada and USA in the west to Zimbabwe in the south and Pakistan in the east joined the first global ‘Music Freedom Day’ – an idea originating from CBC producer Ann MacKeigan. Within weeks, a Google search showed that the event was mentioned more than 10.000 times on the internet. Artists from all over the world were interviewed by journalists, and several important magazines made special articles. Freemuse has thus decided to repeat the event next year in collaboration with our media partners. Listen to our own contributions and find links to the media coverage:

An environment of fear and self-censorship

It was no surprise that the national radio in Zimbabwe did not join Music Freedom Day. In 2005 Banning Eyre in his postscript to the Freemuse Report on Zimbabwe wrote: ‘An environment of fear and self-censorship has morphed into one of outright censorship and corrupted cultural institutions that seek to distort the very essence of the artistic impulse. Even under the best imaginable scenario, it may take generations to heal the wounds Zimbabwe’s cultural meddlers have now inflicted on their society.’ Read the report that unfortunately still is relevant:

SIDA renews contract with Freemuse
SIDA, The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency, has renewed its contract with Freemuse. The contract ensures activity and core funding for the next five years although it is anticipated that Freemuse will attract co-funding before the termination of the contract.

News updates on our website features news stories
and background documents on music censorship every week. The site also contains numerous new video interviews. For instance:

Grup Yorum from Turkey speaks out: Harsh experiences of censorship

Ruba Saqr from Jordan: What musicians’ self-censorship means to development in a society

Members of Freemuse’s executive committee: about the organisation, its aim and results

Full list of video interviews:




– The World Forum on Music and Censorship
Nytorv 17, 3rd floor
1450 Copenhagen K
Tel  +45 33 32 10 27

Freemuse (FREEdom of MUSical Expression) is an international
human rights organisation advocating freedom of expression for musicians
and composers worldwide.

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