Sri Lankan journalist in RSF information heroes list
Posted on May 4th, 2014

By NJ Thakuria,

Guwahati: Sri Lankan journalist M. V. Kaanamylnathan, who has 50 years’ tough experience in journalism in the island nation has been honoured by an international media watchdog as an information hero.

Involved with Uthayan, a Tamil-language daily newspaper in Sri Lanka since 1985, Kaanamylnathan is included in the list of 100 information heroes, which has been prepared by Reporters Sans Frontiers (RSF) and released on May 3 on the occasion of World Press Freedom Day.

The list includes media (information) activists (aged from 25 to 75) from 65 countries who have helped to promote the freedom enshrined in article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights through their courageous work or activism, said an RSF statement.

“They put their ideals in the service of the common good. They serve as examples. World Press Freedom Day should be an occasion for paying tribute to the courage of the journalists and bloggers who constantly sacrifice their safety and sometimes their lives to their vocation,” said RSF’s secretary-general Christophe Deloire.

About the Sri Lankan journalist, the RSF statement narrated, “Kaanamylnathan took the helm of Uthayan, two years after the civil war flared up. Dozens of members of the paper’s staff were among the conflict’s 100,000 dead. Bombings, shootings, grenade attacks and murders were used to try to silence a voice that tried to keep to a middle course between the central government and the Tamil rebels.

” It also added that five years after the official end of the conflict, Kaanamylnathan, who himself escaped an attack in 2001, and his newspaper are still making waves. Last year, a series of articles on land seizures by the Sri Lankan army was followed by a brutal attack on the paper’s offices by six masked men.

The list include a lady Indian journalist from Arunachal Pradesh in northeast India. Tongam Rina, who works for Arunachal Times, an influential English daily published from Itanagar, was shot at by miscreants on 15 July, 2012 in front of the newspaper office suspectedly for her bold articles against anti-social elements in the society.

Some other journalists who have made it to RSF list include Asif Mohiuddin (Bangladesh), Hamid Mir & Muhammad Ziauddin (Pakistan), Jigme Gyatso (Tibet), Mariyath Mohammed (Maldives), Similarly Najiba Ayubi & Danish Karokhel (Afghanistan), Chiranuch Premchaiporn (Thailand), Oudom Tat (Cambodia), Peter John Jaban (Malaysia), Le Ngoc Thanh, Truong Duy Nhat & Pham Chi Dung (Vietnam), Liu Hu & Huang Qi & Li Jianjun (China), Yu Terasawa (Japan), Svetlana Reiter, Aksana Panova & Israpil Shovkhalov (Russia) etc. Similarly Malahat Nasibova, Khadija Ismayilova & Ganimat Zahid (Azerbaijan), Najiba Hamrouni (Tunisia), Said Matinpour & Jila Bani Yaghoob (Iran), Glenn Greenwald & Laura Poitras (USA), Lydia Cacho & Anabel Hern¡ndez (Mexico), Yoani S¡nchez & Angel Santiesteban-Prats (Cuba), Mar­a P­a Matta & Mireya Manquepill¡n Huanquil (Chile), Gerard Ryle (Australia), Lºcio Fl¡vio Pinto (Brazil), Giuseppe Maniaci (Italy), Johnny Bissakonou (Central African Republic), Muhammad Bekzhanov & Mutabar Tadjibayeva (Uzbekistan), Lukpan Akhmedyarov (Kazakhstan), Gorka Land¡buru (Spain), Ali Dilem (Alg©rie), Eric Topona (Tchad), Claudia Duque (Colombia), Queir³s Anast¡cio Chiluvia (Angola), Ali Anouzla & Ali Lmrabet (Morroco) also featured in the list. Others who succeeded in including their names in the list are Kalafi Moala (Tonga), Hassan Ruvakuki (Burundi), Maydaneh Abdallah Okieh (Djibouti), Rodney Sieh (Liberia), Nicaise Kibel Bel’Oka & Tshivis Tshivuadi (Democratic Republic of Congo), Milka Tadic Mijovic (Montenegro), Abdul Bary Taher (Yemen), Andrzej Poczobut (Belarus), Ileana Alamilla (Guatemala), Amara Al-Khitabi (Libya), Agn¨s Uwimana Nkusi (Rwanda), Assen Yordanov (Bulgaria), Reyot Alemu (Ethiopia), Mabel C¡ceres (Peru), Malick Ali Maiga (Mali), Zhanna Litvina (Belarus), Rowena Paraan (Philippines), Yrgalem Fisseha Mebrahtu (Eritrea), Dina Daskalopoulou (Greece), Lirio Abbate (Italy) etc. The list of honoured media activists continue with Adnan Hassanpour (Iran), Julian Assange (Australia), Brankica Stanković (Serbia), Siamak Qaderi (Iran), Serhiy Leshchenko (Ukraine), Nuriddin Karshiboev (Tajikistan), Mazen Darwish (Syria), Hanan Al-Mqawab (Libya), Dina Meza (Honduras), Fahem Boukadous (Tunisia), Jos© Belo (Timor Leste), Ahmed Humeidan & Ali Abdulemam (Bahrain), Itsmania Pineda Platero (Honduras), Biniam Simon (Eritrea), Ver³nica Basurto (Mexico), Gotson Pierre (Haiti), Sardar Muhammad (Iraqi Kurdistan), Dawit Isaac (Eritrea), Abeer Saady (Egypt), Razan Zaitouneh (Syria), Blaž Zgaga (Slovenia), Oleksiy Matsuka (Ukraine), Saouti Ha¯dara (Mali), Amira Hass (Israel), Hasan Cemal & Ismail Saymaz (Turkey) and Waleed Al-Shehhi (United Arab Emirates).

“These information heroes are a source of inspiration to all men and those who aspire to freedom. Without their determination and the determination of all those like them, it would be simply impossible to extend the domain of freedom,” asserted the RSF statement adding that this ‘initiative aims to show that the fight for freedom of information requires not only active support for the victims of abuses but also the promotion of those who can serve as models’.

One Response to “Sri Lankan journalist in RSF information heroes list”

  1. Lorenzo Says:

    M. V. Kaanamylnathan is NOT a hero!

    He runs a PRO TAMIL RACIST newspaper UTHAYAN which is the mouthpiece of TNA (=LTTE).

    ALL these so called information heroes classified by RSF are foreign paid regime change agents in developing countries.

    VERY FEW from developed countries!!

    REAL information hero is Edward Snowden! Where is his name?

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