Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Media Freedom?

The editor in chief and two reporters at one of Denmark's largest newspapers went on trial Monday for publishing classified intelligence reports about former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein's weapons program.

A former intelligence officer has previously been sentenced to prison for leaking the documents in the case, which is viewed in Denmark as a landmark test of media freedom.

Niels Lunde, the Berlingske Tidende newspaper's top editor, and reporters Michael Bjerre and Jesper Larsen, face charges of publishing confidential government documents, which is punishable by fines or up to two years in prison.

In February and March 2004, Bjerre and Larsen wrote a series of articles based on leaked reports from the Danish Defense Intelligence Service. The reports said there was no evidence that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction during Saddam Hussein's rule — one of the main reasons behind the U.S.-led invasion in 2003.

more: International Herald Tribune

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