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October 12th, 2014
01:30 PM ET

ISIS has "rules" for reporters?

CNN senior international correspondent Arwa Damon describes the difficult media environment for reporters covering ISIS in Iraq and Syria.

"For us, as Westerners, right now, crossing into ISIS territory, it just simply is not a viable option," Damon said.

A recently-published list of ISIS "rules" for journalists in the region applies to local journalists.

"Six months ago, before these rules even came out, people weren't even allowed to take cell phone video of areas that ISIS controlled," Damon said. "You couldn't even stand in the streets and take a selfie. Your phone would be confiscated."

Allowing local journalists to film and report - albeit under ISIS control and censorship - is a change, and suggests a new level of sophistication.

The treatment of local journalists "is all governed by this overarching sense of fear," Damon said. "At the end of the day, we're not really talking about a free media, even if these local journalists are able to obtain these various permissions. No one is going to risk angering an entity like the so-called Islamic State."


Filed under: Reliable Sources
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