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Man arrested over Facebook post depicting Nepal PM as monkey

/ 07:19 PM August 22, 2018

A man in Nepal was arrested for sharing a doctored image on Facebook showing Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli’s head superimposed on a monkey’s body, police said Wednesday.

Homnath Sigdel, 44, was taken into custody on Tuesday for “sharing indecent photos that targeted the prime minister”, senior police officer Narendra Prasad Uprety told AFP.

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The offending image appeared on a Facebook group earlier this month and has been shared more than 2,500 times.
Police said Sigdel had also posted a second photo of Oli’s head on a naked human body.

Sigdel could face up to five years in jail and a 100,000 rupee ($900) fine if found guilty under a provision in the Electronic Transactions Act.

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The arrest comes days after Nepal introduced a new criminal code that includes draconian laws that activists have warned could be used to silence critics of the government.

The Communist-led government headed by Oli has shown increasing intolerance of dissent since it took power at the beginning of the year.

In June it became embroiled in a standoff with a popular activist doctor who was on hunger strike to protest against political interference in the medical sector.

In 2016, a Canadian working in Nepal was deported over a series of tweets deemed to “incite conflict” related to the country’s constitution. /ee

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TAGS: dissent, Facebook, Homnath Sigdel, Internet, Nepal
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