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Victoria University has won a court order stopping publication of student magazine Salient -- a move described as "ridiculous" by the editor.

It is believed to be the first time in the 67-year history of the weekly magazine that university authorities have stopped its publication.

An interim injunction was issued in the High Court at Wellington on Friday in response to a proposed article due to be published tomorrow on student fees for 2006. The matter will return to the High Court for a full hearing tomorrow.

News editor Keith Ng said the injunction followed a request by Salient to the university after the magazine obtained "alarming" documents last Wednesday relating to next year's student fees.

"The university has not tried to contact us since Thursday. We've tried to contact them and tell them (our addresses) for service, but we haven't actually been served yet. We've only heard this secondhand from the printers."

Mr Ng expected staff would be served with the injunction tomorrow.

University spokeswoman Jude Urlich said the reason for the delay was that the injunction was obtained after the offices of the Victoria student association -- Salient's owner -- had closed.

Salient editor Emily Braunstein said the "ridiculous" injunction was an "absurdly extreme" measure. She was unaware of any similar attempt to silence the magazine in the past.

"The university is making decisions that affect students enormously and is trying to sweep it under the carpet. We just don't think that's fair. The stupid thing is all they're doing is creating (more) hype."

Ms Braunstein said she would place posters around the university tomorrow telling students that Salient had not been printed because "the vice-chancellor doesn't want you to read what's in it".

Ms Urlich said the university was forced to take out the injunction because Salient "had documents they were not entitled to have in their possession".

"Unfortunately, we were unable to secure the return of those documents and Salient was determined to publish information from those documents."

The university had a "strong obligation" to protect the integrity of government processes.

Ms Urlich refused to comment on the question of media freedom, saying she did not want to "rehearse" arguments that should be heard before the court.

- nzpa