PYONGYANG — A BBC reporter in North Korea has been detained, interrogated for eight hours and eventually expelled from the country over his reporting in the run-up to a rare ruling party congress.
The BBC reporter, Rupert Wingfield-Hayes, was about to board a plane departing Pyongyang airport with two other BBC staff on Friday when he was stopped and taken into detention, the BBC said.
He was then questioned for around eight hours, apparently over one of his reports which questioned the authenticity of a hospital his team was visiting.
“He was taken to a hotel and interrogated by the security bureau here in Pyongyang before being made to sign a statement and then released” on Saturday morning, said John Sudworth, another BBC reporter covering the congress in the North Korean capital.
Foreign journalists invited to cover specific events in North Korea are subjected to very tight restrictions, regarding access and movement.
Numerous journalists have found themselves prevented from returning to the country because their previous coverage was deemed ‘inaccurate’ or ‘disrespectful’ — but detaining and then expelling a reporter while still in the country is extremely rare.
Nirmala Panta rape, murder case : Locals protest after wrong suspect paraded
BHIMDUTTANAGAR — Locals who were protesting against the rape and murder of Nirmala Panta of Kanchanpur’s Bhimdatta Municipality, have enforced shutdown in Bhimduttanagar Bazaar on Tuesday, protesting police’s failure to reveal facts behind the murder of 13-year-old girl and parading wrong suspect on Monday.
The District Police Office, organising a press conference on Monday,had made public Dilip Singh Bista (41), of Baghphanta, Bhimdatta Municipality-19 as Nirmala’s murderer.
Locals have shut down the market area stating that police were not being able to make public the true murderer(s) as they are not convinced by the findings of police citing that Bista was mentally unsound, according to the District Police Office.
Transportation has also been halted.
Bista, a resident of Khanna Chauraha area in Bhimdutta Municipality-19, was apprehended near the scene of crime on Sunday, according to police.
Police making public the wrong suspect has infuriated the locals and fueled the protest.
The agitators including various civil society organisations and human rights defenders have been picketing the District Administration Office and staging rally on the street mounting pressure on the police to reveal the facts behind the heinous crime.
Meanwhile, it had been learnt that police have fired rounds of teargas shells to contain the agitated mob.
Nirmala was found murdered in a sugarcane field on July 27, a day after she had gone to her friend’s home to get a notebook.Follow @gorkhapost