South Africa: A Slap at The Press

A Slap at The Press

The final warning of a government clampdown came last month from Home Affairs Minister Stoffel Botha. It meant that the regime could close the Weekly Mail at any moment. Last week Botha did just that, barring publication of the small (circ. 25,000), liberal, antiapartheid tabloid for four weeks. In a statement released in Pretoria, Botha accused the Mail of "causing a threat to the safety of the public or to the maintenance of public order."

The Mail's co-editor, Anton Harber, called the suspension an act of "narrow-mindedness and intolerance." The editors pledged to keep the staff busy by bringing out special...

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