19 October 2012

Togolese Reporter Attacked By Police

Photo: Telegramme228
Togolese journalists protest.

press release

Justin Anani, a journalist for Le Crocodile weekly was, on October 5, 2012, physically assaulted by police officers while covering a police clamp down on demonstrators belonging to opposition and human rights groups in Lome, the capital of Togo.

The assault left Anani unconscious, and he was rushed to a hospital where he was revived.

According to the Media Foundation for West Africa's (MFWA) correspondent, Anani and other journalists were covering a demonstration held by members of the "Let's Save Togo Collective" (CST) and the "Rainbow" coalition to commemorate the 22nd anniversary of the 5 October, 1990 uprising.

According to the correspondent, Anani was attacked while he and other colleagues had gone to the aid of a journalist who was being harassed by one of the security officers.

"A police officer approached me without me noticing him and he elbowed me in my [abdomen.] I was not able to breathe well, and I fell down. I did not know what happened next, except that I woke up in the hospital later," Anani told the correspondent.

"At the moment, I feel pain in my knees and I also have difficulty breathing. When I walk, I get tired easily," said Anani who is currently undergoing treatment at a local hospital.

The MFWA condemns this attack by calling on the Togolese authorities - especially the police hierarchy - to investigate this incident and take the necessary steps to ensure that their security officers act according to the laws of the country.

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