Media | Politics
CPJ demands release of detained editor
afrol News, 6 January - The international rights organisation, Committee to Protect Journalists has called for the release of the editor of Taquadoumy information site, Hanevi Ould Dehah, saying his continued detention is illegal.
Mr Dehah remains behind bars even after completing his six-month imprisonment sentence which started in June and was expected to expire on 24 December 2009.
CPJ has said the refusal to free Mr Dehah appears to be unlawful and reflective of the politically motivated nature of the case.
The presiding judge, Ahmad al-Fal, has reportedly said he was powerless to free the editor because neither prosecutors nor prison authorities had filed the necessary paperwork to secure his release.
Dakar based organisation, African Rally for Human Rights (RADDHO), has urged Mauritania's highest authorities to respect human rights in accordance with Mauritania's international commitments.
The organisation has lashed the Mauritania’s authorities for the continued detention because the journalist is being held beyond the expiry date of the sentence.
The journalist has reportedly began a hunger strike on 28 December in protest of the authorities’ failure to release him.
Mr Dehah was detained in June and placed at Dart Naim Prison after being convicted of committing acts contrary to Islam and decent behaviour in connection with an article asserting the benefits of sex education.
He was acquitted at the same time on charges of defamation and inciting rebellion stemming from a Taqadoumy article that accused politician Ibrahima Moctar Sarr, head of the Alliance for Justice and Democracy/Movement for Renewal, of improprieties.
The site is reknowned for critically reporting on the military junta that ruled the country from August 2008 its leader, General Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, who is now Mauritania’s sitting president.
The site had also been temporarily blocked in March following the court order from the authorities.
By staff writer
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