IFEX (via) reports that Reporters Without Borders are calling on Chadian members of Parliament to take the necessary steps to ensure the NDjamena press may continue to publish without restrictions, as they did before the a state of emergency was declared on 13 November 2006. Following the decisions of bi-weekly NDjamena Bi-hebdo and weekly Le Temps to suspend publication until the end of the the initial period of the state of emergency, the only source of news available to residents of the nations capital is the pro-government Le Progrès.

Nadjikimo Benoudjita, publication director of the independent weekly Notre Temps, also told RSF that he has decided to suspend publication until the state of emergency is lifted, after the state intelligence bureau (lAgence nationale de sécurité, ANS) ordered him to stop reporting on clashes between rebels and government troops in the east of the country. On 15 November, about 15 intelligence officers appeared at the directors home, which is adjacent to the papers office, and seized all the copies of the paper they found. Street vendors with copies of the latest edition were ordered to turn them over to the police. Benoudjita was made to promise not to distribute any copies not seized by the officers and was summoned to appear before the director-general of national security the next day, who warned him against any attempt to circumvent prior censorship measures set in place by the government for the state of emergency.

The 15 November edition of Notre Temps did appear however, after Benoudjita asked the State Prosecutor to rule on the question of the retroactivity of the measure. Notre Temps had in fact been published before the state of emergency was declared.

In another case, Abdelnasser Garboa, editor-in-chief of the independent weekly LObservateur, told RSF that on 21 November, the Communications Ministrys censorship committee ordered him to reconfigure the layout of the issue set to go to press, so that it would not be noticeable that entire segments that had been removed. The previous weeks edition, like that of many others still being printed in the capital, was published with black strips covering the censored articles, over which the words Censored were printed. The journalist refused to comply.

RSF has facsimiles of the censored pages of Le Temps on their website. Click here to see them.