Iraqi Regulators Order 44 Media Outlets to Close

Posted June 24th, 2012 at 11:45 pm (UTC-5)
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Iraqi regulators have ordered the closure of 44 media organizations in the country, including VOA.

The Communications and Media Commission says the move targets organizations operating without a license.

A media and communications official told VOA that many of the media outlets either lack a permit or the permit has expired.

The commission's order lists Iraqi news organizations as well as international broadcasters, including the British-funded BBC and U.S.-funded radio Radio Sawa. No action has yet been taken to carry out the closure order, and some of the organizations on the list had already closed their bureaus in Iraq.

The Baghdad-based Journalistic Freedoms Observatory criticized the order, and called on the commission to withdraw regulations that it says violate the Iraqi constitution's guarantees of press freedom.