CAJ alarmed by journalist's detention at border

OTTAWA, Dec. 4 /CNW/ - The Canadian Association of Journalists is calling on Public Safety Minister Peter Van Loan to explain American journalist Amy Goodman's recent detention at the border and is seeking a guarantee that similar incidents will not occur in the future.

Goodman, a well-known journalist and broadcaster, was detained and questioned for more than an hour while crossing into Canada at Blaine, Wa., on Nov. 25. Her notebooks and computer were scrutinized and she was asked repeatedly if she planned to speak critically about the 2010 Olympics.

"This is not how a country that values a free press ought to treat journalists, including foreign ones," said CAJ President Mary Agnes Welch. "This could have been an isolated incident, but it could bode badly for the hundreds of journalists who will enter Canada in the coming months. What happens when a journalist writes or broadcasts something the federal government doesn't agree with?"

The Canadian Association of Journalists has asked Minister Van Loan for an explanation and assurances that journalists will not be stopped at the border or refused entry to Canada for the content of their coverage, thought or expression.

Amy Goodman delivered the closing keynote at the CAJ's national conference and annual general meeting in Winnipeg in 2005.

The Canadian Association of Journalists is Canada's largest professional organization for journalists from all media, with about 1,200 members across the country. The CAJ's primary roles are to provide high-quality professional development for its members and public-interest advocacy.

SOURCE Canadian Association of Journalists

For further information: For further information: Mary Agnes Welch, CAJ president, (204) 470-8862; John Dickins, CAJ executive director, (613) 526-8061; To join the CAJ, please visit: http://www.caj.ca/membership


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