An international organization monitoring news media rights is demanding that Nepal's royal government lift censorship and release six journalists detained since King Gyanendra seized power earlier this month.
The International Federation of Journalists says repression and censorship are the most serious threats to free reporting and have a crippling effect on democracy. The Brussels based group says the strict censorship policies have left at least 600 journalists out of work. Federation President Christopher Warren is currently visiting Nepal to assess the situation.
The king declared a state of emergency and dismissed the government February first, saying authorities had failed to stop a nine-year old Maoist insurgency that resulted in 11,000 deaths. India, Britain, and the United States have condemned the king's action and are considering suspending security aid to Nepal.