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Last updated: 14 March, 2012 - Published 17:33 GMT
 
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SMS 'censorship' criticised
 
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Media watchdogs have protested moves by the government to censor dissemination of news, related to security services by news alerts issued through text and SMS.

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has said that there is no legal sanction for censoring news flows.

The Media Centre for National Security of the Government of Sri Lanka has informed SMS providers that "any news related to national security, security forces, and the police should get approval prior to dissemination".

Free Media Movement

Meanwhile Sri Lanka's Free Media Movement has warned that this could be the first step towards re-imposing a comprehensive regime of censorship over the media.

Lasantha Ruhunage of the Sri Lanka Working Journalists Association (SLWJA) told BBC Sandeshaya that the Sri Lankan government needs to reconsider this move which is an infringement on the right to information.

"Media organisations will stand together strongly against such censorship," said the SLWJA General Secretary.

 
 
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