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Last updated: 08 January, 2009 - Published 18:40 GMT
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SLBC censors BBC reports
President Mahinda Rajapaksa announcing the capture of Kilinochchi
President Rajapaksa is among the casualties of SLBC censorship
BBC reports on the protests against the killing of Lasantha Wickramatunga and the government forces capture of Elephant Pass were censored by the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC) on Friday.

A report including President Mahinda Rajapakse's address to the nation announcing the Elephant Pass capture was among the items that faced government censorship.

In a report where voices of the opposition leader Ranil Wickramasinghe and President Mahinda Rajapakse was broadcast, both leader's voices were disrupted by censorship.

The BBC Sandeshaya and BBC Thamilosai reports had been experiancing selective censorship during the past few weeks.

No official censorship

The BBC had received many telephone inquiries from listeners who were intrigued by the disruption to the programmes.

Lasantha Wickramatunga
SLBC censored BBC reports on Mr. Wickramatunga's murder

The BBC reports on the attack on the MTV/Sirasa station and the reports on the killing of the Sunday Leader were among the recent reports that were taken off air by the SLBC.

Since November 27th where the SLBC blanked out reports on the annual speech by Tamil Tiger leader Velupillai Prabhakaran, the government has blanked out certain reports by the BBC Sinhala and Tamil output, amidst protests by media watchdogs.

The BBC first entered a rebroadcasting agreement with the SLBC in the late nineties.

There is no official censorship in Sri Lanka.

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