An Official Letter from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan is circulated on social media, indicating that the ministry seeks to restrict freedom of speech which is contrary to the country’s current laws.
The letter, titled All Ministry Foreign Affairs’ Agencies in and outside the country has stated: “It is directed that the Ministry Foreign Affairs’ officials and contractual employees in addition to considering the guidelines for using social networks that previously sent to you, you are required to seriously avoid expressing any kind of compliment and view on the country’s political-security issues through the social networks.”
It has also been indicated in the letter that in case of violation of the aforementioned directive, the employees will be taken to legal procedures and punishment.
According to Nai Supporting Open Media in Afghanistan, the letter opposes the Article 34th of Afghanistan’s Constitutional Law that guarantees freedom of speech. Abdul Mujeeb Khalvatgar, Nai Managing Director says: “Any governmental or private administration can have its own specific policy but the policy shouldn’t be in confliction with the current laws of the country. Unfortunately, the letter from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is in an entire contradiction with the constitutional Law of the country and determines the suppression of freedom of speech which is a fundamental right of citizens. ”
Nai asks the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to clarify why a high profile and important entity such as Foreign Ministry has acted in violation of law.
Nai also asks the ministry to retract the letter and order in order not to deprive citizens of their liberty and to allow citizens to own their rights.