Congo Kinshasa
Congolese journalist remains detained

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afrol News, 10 April - Jose Feruzi Samwegele, a journalist with 'RTCN 2' (Radio-télévision nationale congolaise 2), reportedly was arrested on 3 April by two agents of the governmentent army, FAC (Forces armées cogolaises), in the capital of Congo Kinshasa (DRC). His "basic rights" allegedly "have been violated."

The French group defending journalists, Reporters sans Frontières (RSF), yesterday reported on the arrest of Samwegele in Kinshasa and filed a strong protest. In a letter sent to the Congolese Defence Minister, Irun A. Wan, RSF alleged Samwegele's "basic rights have been violated".

According to information obtained by RSF, Jose Samwegele, was arrested on 3 April 2002 by FAC agents in the Congolese capital. He was taken to a solitary confinement unit by a military body "investigating anti-patriotic activities" (Détection des activités militaires anti-patrie – DEMIAP). 

Samwegele has reportedly been accused of circulating a press release from the opposition group UDPS (Union pour la démocratie et le progrès social) that has been made public at the inter-Congolese dialogue currently taking place in Sun City, South Africa. 

Writing to Defence Minister Wan, RSF asked for the immediate release of Samwegele, and reminded the Minister that "detention centres which do not depend on the judiciary are now illegal." 

- In addition, we are awaiting an explanation of the official reason for his arrest, said Robert Ménard, RSF's general secretary. RSF stated that under article 9 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which Congo Kinshasa has ratified, all detainees are guaranteed the right to be informed of any accusations against them.

Since the inauguration of President Joseph Kabila, 27 journalists have been arrested by security forces, RSF recounts. The media watchdog says these forces "continue to act with impunity."

Sources: Based on RSF

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