AJA calls for release of Mongolian journalist
The Asia Journalist Association (AJA) delivered a protest letter to the Mongolian Embassy in Seoul seeking an immediate release of its Vice President Dolgor Chuluunbaatar. Chuluunbaatar, an editor-in-chief of Ulaanbaatar Times, has been accused of illegally privatizing and damaging public property and has been in government custody in Mongolia since March 24.Representatives of AJA’s Korean bureau paid a visit to the Mongolian Embassy on Thursday, delivering the complaint letter to the Mongolian Ambassador to Korea Gerel Dorgipalam. The letter is to be delivered to the Mongolian president and prime minister.
“We have asked 10 Mongolian reporters about Chuluunbaatar’s whereabouts and have confirmed that he is being illegally incarcerated. We hope that our message is delivered to the Mongolian president and those concerned,” said Lee Sang-ki, the founding president of AJA, Thursday.
The Mongolian ambassador thanked the visiting party for taking an interest in the matters of a Mongolian citizen and promised to deliver the letter to the Mongolian president.
Chuluunbaatar has pleaded not guilty to the charges lodged against him on April 7 but has not yet received an open and fair court hearing. His defense counsels have asked continuously for Chuluunbaatar’s bail but none of their requests have been accepted. Doctors have also asked for his release claiming that Chuluunbaatar is in poor health and needs urgent medical treatment but their claims have also been rejected.
The Confederation of Mongolian Journalists contends that the charges against Chuluunbaatar are politically motivated. Organizations such as Reporters Without Borders and Globe International have also made similar claims through a statement.
Dolgor Chuluunbaatar has worked as a reporter in Mongolia for the past 25 years.