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Sri Lanka blocks 5 news websites over ‘insults’

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COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — Sri Lankan officials say five news websites have been blocked because they committed character assassination and insulted people including key political leaders.

Media groups were planning protests against the action that one group called undemocratic. Sri Lankan laws do not restrict the press from criticizing leaders.

Information and Media Ministry Secretary W.B. Ganegala said Monday that many complaints were made against the sites. They were blocked starting Saturday.

Director general of the Telecommunication Regulatory Commission Anusha Palpita said his commission blocked five sites. They are www.lankaenews.com, srilankamirror.com, srilankaguardian.com, paparacigossip9.com and www.lankawaynews.com.

Acting president of the Sri Lanka Working Journalist Association Gnanasiri Kottigoda condemned the move and called it undemocratic.

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