Two months after closing the Radio Azadi (Radio Liberty) and Voice of America FM frequencies, the Taliban has shut down their websites in Afghanistan.
Officials from Radio Azadi and Voice of America (VOA) confirmed the news yesterday that their Pashto and Farsi websites have been blocked in Afghanistan.
Jamie Fly, the President and Chief Executive of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, said:
“When the Taliban took Azadi off its airwaves, Azadi came back stronger than ever, doubling its daily time on air to become a 24/7 service. For two decades, Afghans have turned to Azadi for hope, and we will continue to find ways to reach them.”
Afghanistan Journalists Center (AFJC) said the Taliban’s actions were another clear sign of the continuation of suppression of free and critical media in the county.
The Taliban takeover of Afghanistan in August 2021 has led to half of the 600 active media outlets in Afghanistan shutting down due to economic problems and restrictions imposed by the group, forcing hundreds of journalists leave the country. AFJC annual report showed 260 violations of media freedom and journalists in 2022, a 138% increase including arrests, beatings, torture and insults by the Taliban forces.