The National Intelligence Services of Sudan have officially restarted its pre-publication censorship for media in the country, stopping stories from being published before they are printed.

Committee to Protect Journalists freelancer Abdelgadir Mohammed Abdelgadir said more April 12 that the NISS started in 2012 trying to ruin newspapers by repeatedly confiscating their editions. “Those confiscations could cost up to $5,000 in printing costs,” the article highlighted.

The CPJ correspondent, who is based-in Karthoum, said that, ironically, the NISS started toughening its censorship campaign after the speech Sudan Prime Minister Omar Al-Bashir gave April 1. Al-Bashir said he intended to work to restore press freedom and encouraged the dialogue among every political party in the country.
Sudan NISS has always been in the spotlight for its attacks against media freedom. Global Journalist reported last week that the NISS suspended the editor-in-chief of the independent newspaper Al Sahafa for its involvement in the “public dispute over the censorship process in Sudan (…) He is the first chief editor suspended for it.”

Pre-publications censorship ended in 2009 after Al-Bashir requested the NISS to stop it. Instead, All Africa reported Sudan’s president established a “Journalist Honor Accord” that explained journalists how to apply “self-censorship” and not damage the nation and its security when reporting the news.

Freedom House said Sudan is a non-free country with a non-free press system. Reporters Without Borders also ranks it among the bottom 10 countries on its press-freedom index.

By Elisa López Aguado.