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7 SL mediamen killed in '06

The conflict in Lanka has forced scores of Tamil scribes into silence or hiding, reports PK Balachandran.

india Updated: Feb 07, 2007, 18:34 IST
PK Balachandran
PK Balachandran

Seven media workers, including three journalists, were killed by armed groups in Sri Lanka in 2006, says the annual report of the Reporters Without Frontiers.

Among the dead were S Sugirdarajan of the Colombo-based Sudar Oli daily; S Sivamaharajah, editor of a Jaffna-based Tamil daily; and three employees of the Jaffna-based Uthayan daily.

At least two journalists, including a Sinhalese photographer working for Reuters, had to flee the country in fear of reprisals, the report released on Thursday added.

"Pro-government militia, and occasionally the army, have attacked the press which they accuse of supporting Tamil nationalism.

On the other side, the Tiger Tamils threatened those who oppose their political position," the media watchdog said.

"The escalation of the conflict pitting the army against the Tamil Tigers (LTTE) forced scores of Tamil journalists into silence or hiding.

Most correspondents for the Tamil media in the country no longer have their byline on their reports for fear of reprisals," the report said.

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