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Iran: Reviewer of music book sentenced to jail

3 June 2005

Banafsheh Samgis, a cultural critic at the newspaper Iran, has been sentenced to jail for writing that the prophet Muhammed liked music played by women Banafsheh Samgis has been accused of “insulting and undermining the holy tenets of islam” and “distorting Islamic history” in a favorable review she wrote on the …

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Afghanistan: Wajiha Rastagar

30 May 2005

The two wings against music censorship Wajiha Rastagar is one of the most famous Afghan female singers. Dr Samay Hamed talks with Wajiha Rastagar about her first steps towards music, how she became a singer, and how she sees the present situation in Afghanistan today   An obvious symbol of …

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Afghanistan: Musicians unite against censorship

25 May 2005

130 Afghans have established a new musician’s organisation, the Afghanistan Music Foundation, with the objective of creating unification among musicians in the country – and to fight against music censorship and oppression of musicians   Text and video by Mik Aidt, journalist & Freemuse’s web editor Photos by Hafizullah Haidar, CSHRN …

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Jordan: Freemuse Round Table Meeting in Amman in April 2005

2 May 2005

    Freemuse hosts a round table meeting in Amman which brings together a group of artists and organisers from the cultural scene of the nearby region   The meeting, held on April 1, 2005, was one of the first steps made by Freemuse to direct a sharpened focus towards …

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Egypt: Tunisian singer Najla refused entry

1 April 2005

  Najla worked as a belly dancer and singer in Egypt. She had taken a short vacation from Egypt and visited her homeland Tunisia, but was shocked upon her return that Cairo Airport Security would not let her enter the country The news of Najla’s banning from Egypt was a …

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Egypt: state censorship committee bans music videos

1 April 2005

Egyptian authorities have initiated a crack down on music videos which feature females barely dressed. As popular female stars reveal more and more flesh, controversy grows in Egypt’s mainly Muslim society The Egyptian Censorship Committee has banned 20 music videos “which featured sexual connotations and females barely dressed”, stressing that even the words …

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Turkish musician of Laz minority refused by public tv

30 March 2005

A musician from Turkey’s Laz minority group says the country’s public television has refused to allow him to perform his songs   The Laz musician Birol Topaloglu was refused to perform his songs in the Laz language because a tv producer claimed that new Turkish laws adopting democratic European standards exclude …

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Iraq: Students beaten to death for playing music

24 March 2005

In Basra, Shia Islamic militias apply their own version of Islamic law, writes reporter for The Times of London, Catherine Philp   In the southern Iraqi city of Basra, dozens of men from a private militia poured into a local park where a group of students were having a picnic. The men were armed with …

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Algerian rai musician: Censorship on political songs in the West

10 March 2005

Algerian musician and rai music rebel Rachid Taha has told BBC World Service that he believes Western radio stations are more restrictive in what music they play than their counterparts in the Middle East, because they refrain from airing political songs.   Algerian musician and rai rebel Rachid Taha has …

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