Global round-up: Times gets new international app

timesoflondonThe Times and The Sunday Times are targeting international audiences with the launch of a new weekly digital edition designed to provide a “world view from London”.

The Times of London Weekly app will be available in 46 countries and collate the best journalism from the News UK mastheads into a single edition to be published on Thursdays.

“Our new weekly app offers international readers the very best of British journalism, which regularly sets the agenda at home and abroad,” The Times editor John Witherow said.

The app’s coverage will include local and international news, business, sports, features, columnists and editorials.

The app will be available on smartphone and tablet and cost the equivalent of £2.99 per month in local currencies following a one month free trial.


Detention of Snowden reporter’s partner ‘lawful’

The British Court of Appeal has ruled as lawful the police detention of David Miranda, the partner of former The Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald who wrote a number of stories about the spying activities of the US and UK.

Miranda was held under the Terrorism Act for nine hours at Heathrow Airport in August 2013 while he was traveling from Germany to Brazil. He was carrying documents for Greenwald, including encrypted intelligence files leaked by former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden.

Judges did not agree with Miranda’s argument that his detention under schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act 2000 breached human rights law and was a disproportionate use of anti-terrorism powers.

However, the panel did say existing laws did not offer adequate protection for reporters. Judges thought there should be stronger legal safeguards when the stop-and-search power is used against journalists, “to avoid the risk that it will be exercised arbitrarily”. They said Parliament should decide on what form the safeguards should take.


US journalist freed after 18 months in Iran jail

The Washington Post journalist Jason Rezaian who has been imprisoned in Iran for almost 18 months has been released as part of a prisoner exchange deal brokered with the US.

Rezaian, who was detained along with his wife on July 22, 2014, was released at the weekend with several other American detainees.

Several media outlets in the US were aware of negotiations, but observed a media blackout at the request of the State Department, according to The Poynter Institute.

Publisher of The Washington Post Frederick J Ryan junior said friends and colleagues at the paper were elated by the news.

“Our deep appreciation also goes to the many government leaders, journalists, human rights advocates and others around the world who have spoken out on Jason’s behalf and against the harsh confinement that was so wrongly imposed upon him,” Mr Ryan said in a statement.


AFP sets up in North Korea

Agence France-Presse will open a permanent bureau in Pyongyang, becoming the second major international news agency to set up in the North Korean capital.

AFP’s new bureau will start producing video, photos and text when it becomes operational in the first half of 2016, following an agreement signed this week between AFP and the Korean Central News Agency.

“AFP’s role is to be present everywhere in the world in order to fulfil its news mission as completely as possible, in particular through images,” said AFP Chairman Emmanuel Hoog.

There are few foreign media organisations with offices in Pyongyang, however Associated Press notably opened a Northern Korean bureau in 2012.

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