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Rajan Datar | 16:37 UK time, Friday, 10 September 2010

It's a story you could imagine coming straight out of a John le Carre spy thriller. 

A little while ago, BBC News Correspondent Clive Myrie was emailed out of the blue by an old contact from his days as Europe Correspondent.

He met the man and was told that the Basque separatist movement ETA was likely to call a ceasefire - and that Clive could be the man to break the exclusive.

Basque separatists ETA declare a ceasefire at an unknown location. The BBC had the exclusive. Picture: Getty Images

The next stage of this cloak and dagger plot involved waiting for a phone text with the coded message "It was good to see you in London", then proceeding to the Gare du Nord train station in Paris and collecting a videotape, in which the ETA leaders made their announcement of a ceasefire.

On this week's Over To You I talk to Clive and ask him the obvious question : "How do you know you weren't being taken for a ride here?"

Hear his response, and more insights into the relationship between journalist and confidential sources on this weekend's programme.

South Africa censorship

Also on the show, we reflect the growing concern that the South African Government wants to impose stricter censorship laws on the media.

The ANC feels the media has become irresponsible, is controlled by business interests that are inimical to the government, and has shown itself to be incapable of self-regulation. 

To that end it's proposing a new media tribunal and introducing hefty sentences for journalists who publish "state secrets".

Now this may or may not have anything to do with several leading ANC figures, including President Jacob Zuma, coming under close scrutiny from the media in recent years. But it certainly sours the afterglow of a football World Cup tournament that was, on the whole, a PR triumph for South Africa. 

Opponents argue that the new proposed legislation would undermine freedom of speech, criminalise investigative reporting and threaten whistleblowers in the civil service with lengthy prison sentences. 

Perhaps most damaging is the claim that it is a return to the harsh climate witnessed under apartheid. It has certainly raised the hackles of former anti-apartheid campaigners from the literary world like Nadine Gordimer who have signed a petition of protest.

You can hear more about the background to, and possible consequences of all this, in my interview with a former journalist, Professor Anton Harber from Witwatersrand University in Johannesburg.

Plus your comments on everything from irritation with incessant promotional trails to an interview with the former British Prime Minister to the inexplicable rules of cricket......   

Rajan Datar is the Presenter, Over To You

Over To You is your chance to have your say about the BBC World Service and its programmes. It airs at 00:40, 03:40 and 12:40 every Sunday (GMT).


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