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Egypt: Silencing Voices, Religious and Secular

Posted December 4th, 2013 at 7:16 pm (UTC+0)
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  Egypt’s new military-backed government has heightened its crackdown on dissent over the past week with a string of arrests. Most recently, Tuesday morning, December 3, secular activist Ahmed Douma tweeted that he had been arrested at his Cairo home and taken to a police station.  He said he did not know the reason for […]

UPDATE: Bahrain Activist Nabeel Rajab to Remain in Prison

Posted December 3rd, 2013 at 5:53 pm (UTC+0)
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Associated Press reports that a Bahrain court this week rejected request for the early release of jailed human rights activist human Nabeel Rajab, subject of my 28 November posting.  His lawyer Jalila al-Sayed says a judge rejected her request Sunday to approve a conditional early release.  Bahrain’s state news agency says Rajab was arrested on […]

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US Citizen Held in UAE Prison for Spoof YouTube Video

Posted December 2nd, 2013 at 7:03 pm (UTC+0)

    An American citizen is the first foreign national imprisoned in the UAE in violation of a new cybercrimes law. It began in October 2013, when twenty-nine year old Shezanne Cassim uploaded a satirical video he and a group of friends had made.  Six months later, he and his four friends received phone calls […]

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Footprint-Free Social Messaging Hits China; Russia, Iran, Arab Versions Next

Posted November 30th, 2013 at 5:33 pm (UTC+0)
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  Kwikdesk is only one week old, but a local version of the social messaging tool has already hit China, with the translation help of  Wu’er Kaixi, the Chinese dissident known for his role in the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests. Kwikdesk allows users to anonymously send messages of up to 300 words with hashtags.  They […]

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China Boasts Internet Clean-Up a Resounding Success

Posted November 29th, 2013 at 5:46 pm (UTC+0)
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China  says its campaign against what it calls “online rumors” has really cleaned up the internet. Ren Xianliang, deputy director of China’s State Internet Information Office, told reporters in Beijing Thursday, “The rumors have declined significantly, but this hasn’t affected the normal flow of information.” Last September, China expanded existing censorship laws by announcing tough […]

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Will Bahrain Free Jailed Activist Nabeel Rajab on Good Behavior?

Posted November 28th, 2013 at 3:17 pm (UTC+0)
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Reverend Billy and the Golden Toads: A Test of Free Speech in the U.S.?

Posted November 25th, 2013 at 2:43 pm (UTC+0)
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He calls himself Reverend Billy, the pastor of the Church of Earthalujah–otherwise known as the Church of Stop Shopping Now.  And when he and his “choir master” Nehemiah Luckett, appear in a New York City court on December 9th, they could end up spending a year in jail. The comic activist, whose real name is […]

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Repressed: A Voice for the Voiceless

Posted November 22nd, 2013 at 7:08 pm (UTC+0)

  Years ago, I took a job as a radio newscaster in a country whose constitution guaranteed free speech “within the limits of the law.” A central editorial team wrote our news for us.  Most news items seemed designed not to inform but to promote nationalism; they always opened with news of what the ruler […]

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About rePRESSEDed

VOA reporter Cecily Hilleary monitors the state of free expression and free speech around the world.



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