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IPI’s Letter Urges End to Roh’s Anti-Press Measures

Posted August. 29, 2007 07:22,   


The International Press Institute (IPI) has openly sent a letter to Korean president Roh Moo-hyun to urge him to cancel his press reform plan.

The letter reads, “We must again declare that your ‘Measures for Developing Advanced Media Support System’ seriously damage freedom of the press in South Korea by restricting reporters’ entry to government offices and preventing public servants from talking with journalists freely, thus also limiting the public’s right to know. Our investigative efforts have resulted in strong disagreement with your view that the "Korean Government has done its part through [these] news media measures [to provide] a better environment for the media to gather news and write good stories…in the interest of the public’s right to know."

According to the IPI, far from acting in the public’s interest, the Korean government is obviously acting in its own self-interest by restricting the media’s access in the run-up to the December presidential elections.

The IPI’s website has posted the letter, signed by Johann P. Fritz, the IPI’s director. The IPI also released a statement criticizing the South Korean government’s measure three times on May 30, June 1 and 25.