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President Trump calls “fake news” the country’s “biggest enemy,” with specific reference to NBC and CNN’s coverage of his meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine issues report urging universities to make sweeping changes in how they address sexual harassment. Representative Steve King (R-Iowa) retweets a known British neo-Nazi’s racist post on immigration, one in a series of incidents in which King has promoted such views. Private technology companies help the United States government build a virtual “wall” at the U.S.-Mexico border, prompting concerns over privacy and surveillance. Oleg Sentsov, 2017 PEN/ Barbey Freedom to Write Award honoree , enters second month of hunger strike. -Anoosh Gasparian, External Relations Coordinator

The most pressing threats and notable goings-on in free expression today


Trump Calls ‘Fake News’ the Country’s Biggest Enemy
President Trump declared that the nation’s “biggest enemy is the Fake News,” particularly NBC and CNN for their coverage of the North Korea summit. His tweet on Tuesday echoed a comment made last year, in which he called the news media “the enemy of the American people.”

How Universities Deal With Sexual Harassment Needs Sweeping Change, Panel Says
Efforts to prevent sexual harassment in science, engineering and medicine have failed, and universities need to make sweeping changes in the way they deal with the issue. The 311-page document is the national academies’ first report addressing sexual harassment, a problem that has long simmered in labs and classrooms, and some people predicted it could help spur meaningful change.

Republican Rep. Steve King Promotes Well-Known Neo-Nazi On Twitter
Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) retweeted a British neo-Nazi on Tuesday, the latest in a series of incidents in which the congressman has parroted or promoted the views of unabashed white supremacists. King has a long history of making racist statements and signaling his support for white nationalism.

‘Surveillance Society’: Has Technology at the US-Mexico Border Gone Too Far?
Anduril Industries is one of a growing number of companies to cash in on government contracts for hi-tech virtual alternatives to physical wall. The company has developed towers that feature a laser-enhanced camera, radar and a communications system.


Concerns Grow for Oleg Sentsov as Hunger Strike Enters Second Month *PEN Case List
Ukranian filmmaker, Oleg Senstov, has been on hunger strike since May 14 and has said he will only start eating again if he and all the Ukrainian political prisoners are released. Sentsov is among some 70 political prisoners caught up in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine over the contested region of Crimea.

Tanzania’s Independent Websites, Podcasts and Video Channels Gave Gone Dark as the Country’s New Blogger Tax Goes Into Effect
As of this Friday, anyone operating an independent online presence in Tanzania will have to pay a licensing fee equivalent to an average year’s wages, and submit to a harsh set of censorship rules, as well as an obligation to unmask anonymous posters and commenters, with stiff penalties for noncompliance.

Afghan Taliban Decry Radio Tower Bombing as Attack on Free Speech
The Afghan Taliban denounced “American occupying forces” for attacking their Voice of Shariah Radio station in the central province of Ghazni, but the United States denied the charge and said Afghan air force planes had targeted a broadcasting tower.

Cambodia’s New Online Media Directive Criticized as ‘Censorship’
A group of NGOs has criticized a Cambodian government working group set up to monitor and “control” online news. The group was formed by Cambodia’s ministries of information, interior and posts and telecommunications. The government declaration gives the ministries the power to take action against people violating the rules.

Chinese Regime Tightens Social Media Control With Investigation on College Students
Recent events have revealed how China’s internet companies and higher education collude with censorship authorities to closely monitor citizens on social media. In recent years, China’s internet censorship apparatus has gotten increasingly oppressive.

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