The publishers of two weekly newspapers that have been critical of Ethiopia's ruling party say they have stopped publication because of government obstruction.

The publishers are appealing to the country's newly appointed Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn to intervene. A government spokesman denied that the Ethiopian government is telling the country's largest printer not to publish the papers.

Both Feteh, Ethiopia's largest weekly at 27,500 copies, and Finote Netsanet, which is published by the largest opposition group, Unity for Democracy and Justice, have been unable to reach their readers for several weeks. The papers say the state-owned Berhanena Selam printing company refuses to print them.

A media rights official from the Committee to Protect Journalists blamed the government for not allowing the papers to be printed.