Editor arrested over blasphemy charges

Editor arrested over blasphemy charges

November 28, 2014

Panjshir: Acting editor-in-chief of Panjshir's state-owned biweekly has been arrested for publishing a poem considered blasphemous.

Abdul Jabbar Jobran 28, was arrested by police following a meeting of local clerics with the Panjshir’s governor Abdul Rahman Kabiri in Bazarak, on November 25.

The clerics have demanded local administration to punish responsible person for publishing this poem.

Jobran’s colleagues say he has copied the controversial poem from the Internet and published it in the biweekly last month.

According to Afghanistan's media law, journalists can be arrested only after their case is first reviewed by the Media Commission, but In the case of Abdul Jabbar, this process has not followed yet.

AFJC says the press is required to respect Afghanistan's official religion, But authorities cannot assume the right to arrest the journalists.

In October, Afghanistan Express daily columnist condemning Islamic State (IS) and the Taliban triggered demonstrations in several cities around country, with protesters denouncing the article as blasphemous and calling on the government to punish the publication.

A week later, confirmation came that the editor had indeed been escaped from Afghanistan and the newspaper's offices closed.

Afghan media outlets have sprung up in large numbers since the ouster of the Taliban regime in late 2001. According to the ministry of Information and Culture, there are now 170 FM radio stations, 55 TV channels, and 1500 of print publications including 12 newspapers, 9 news agencies, 500 weblog and websites operate around the country.