Thursday 19 September 2019

Journalists, aid workers face restrictions on work in terrorist areas

Photo: Depositphotos.com

Journalists and aid workers will have to apply for special permission from the justice ministry to work in areas controlled by terrorist groups, under new legislation approved in the lower house of parliament on Tuesday.

The controversial rules will make it a criminal office to remain in a terrorist-held area, which ministers hope will make it easier to prosecute Dutch jihadis who have spent time in Syria.

Efforts by GroenLinks and D66 to bring in an exemption for aid workers and journalists did not get majority support in parliament. The legislation still has to be approved in the senate.

Dutch journalists organisations say the rules will make it impossible for reporters to do an independent job and may threaten their contact with sources on the ground.

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