Ethiopia reinstates Addis Ababa Standard's licence
ADDIS ABABA - The federal media authority of Ethiopia has reinstated the publishing license of the Addis Ababa Standard, one of the online newspapers that were accused of working with "enemies" in a bid to "discredit" the sovereignty of the Horn of Africa nation.
Last week, the Addis Ababa Standard disputed the allegations and vowed to "seek for justice" immediately. The media house first started as a magazine before opting for online publication, making it one of the most read online media houses.
In a statement, the Media Authority disclosed that it had held discussions with the media house, adding that it was assured of editorial independence among other controversial issues that had been raised by the government.
"In our discussions, the Addis Ababa editors have assured us they enjoy full editorial independence from all parties including persons with stakes in the company. They have also assured us they strive to do impartial reporting and are not mouthpiece to any political entities," read the statement.
"Therefore, having come to an understanding regarding their past errors and based on their pledge to operate with adherence to the law going forward, we have decided to reinstate their operational license," the authority further said.
It's alleged that the Addis Ababa Standard was penalized for keeping the public informed about the Tigray conflict, which has been ongoing for over eight months. The federal army waged an operation in the region after the Tigray Defense Forces [TDF] attacked Northern Command.
Since then, the TDF has been battling with ENDF, Eritrea troops, and Amhara regional forces, recapturing several towns that had been seized. Humanitarian teams say the federal government forces targeted innocent civilians, killing thousands of them.
In a brief statement, the Addis Ababa Standard acknowledged the reinstatement of the license, adding that it will continue to adhere to the truth in reporting. It also thanked several organizations for standing with it during the difficult moments.
"AS will be following through the pledge to make sure that such unfounded allegations are not taken as a statement of fact. On this occasion AS would like to unequivocally state that as a reputable media its allegiance is to the truth, and the truth only," read the statement.
"The newsroom management would like to take this opportunity to express its appreciation and gratitude to several countries, media institutions, rights organizations, and individuals for expressing deep concern and unreserved support during the last several days. We take these messages to heart."