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UPES website blocked in Mauritania and disappears from GOOGLE news in Arabic
23/02/2009

   

 

   

Mauritanian medias’ sources indicated Today that the website of the Saharawi Journalists’ and writers’ Union (UPES) was blocked in Mauritania, and disappeared from the news page of GOOGLE Arabic, knowing that it used to be the main source of information about Western Sahara on GOOGLE.ae.

The same sources affirmed that this is the first time that a Saharawi website is blocked to internet navigators in the neighbouring country of Mauritania.

No more information are available on the sides behind this new attack against the Saharawi website. And it was only thanks to some faithful visitors to the website that the news about the blockage of the site was known to UPES staff.

The same sources indicated that the navigator has got to visit the website through Proxies, since Sunday, when they were definitely sure that it was intentionally blocked.

At the meantime, the website disappeared from the GOOGLE Arabic news page.

The Secretary General of the UPES, Malainin Lakhal, declared that it is still too early to accuse or to hold any side accountable for the blockage of the website in Mauritania, before some facts and proofs are found.

He considered, nevertheless, that the blockage of the UPES website is “a shameful attitude and doesn’t meet the standards and principles of freedom of expression, freedom of journalism, and the freedom of exchange and reception of information”.

With regards to GOOGLE Arabic, he estimated that the international search website is “asked to unveil the real reasons behind this attitude against a website that has never called to violence or to any violations of ethics and human principles and rights”.

He also considered the blockage of UPES website from the GOOGLE Arabic “another form of complicity with the Moroccan regime and the Moroccan Medias siege on the Saharawi people”.

It should be recalled that the Moroccans are usually targeting the Saharawi websites, especially the pages that unveil Rabat’s massive human rights violations in the occupied territories of Western Sahara.

UPES calls on all international journalists’ organisations and associations concerned about freedom to openly condemn this new attack against the freedom of press and freedom of expression against the Saharawi WebPages and journalists.

UPES also recalled that one of its members, Mr. Mustapha Abd Daiem, short stories writer and journalist, is still detained in the Moroccan prison of Inzegan, because of his political opinions and engagement in favour of the independence of Western Sahara.