7 February 2013

Somalia - Imprisoning a Journalist Due to a Report On Rape

press release

The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI), denounced the unjust sentences which issued by the authorities against the raped woman and the journalist who interviewed her, in which the army forces were accused of committing this crime.

A Somalia Court, headed by the Judge Ahmed Aden Farah, in the hearing hold on February 5, 2013, sentenced the journalist "Abdulasis Abdulnour" for one years imprison, on the background of an interview held with the raped women by the army troops as the court charged him with insulting the institutions of the state and assault her honor. The charges included getting in the house of the woman while her husband is absent and allegations of a rape event according to the court.

The court sentenced the raped woman for one year due to allegations that she is a liar and insulting the State's institutions, the court said that the woman must execute the penalty after finishing taking care of her child.

On Tuesday January 10, 2013, the authorities arrested the journalist "Abdulasis Abdulnour Ibrahim", the correspondent of "Dalsan broadcast" in Mogadishu due an interview with one of the ladies who were raped by 5 army men, as the security bodies subpoenaed the journalist to the headquarter of the criminal investigation department to investigate him regarding this interview before publishing its details.

ANHRI said "the assault on a journalist as a result of fact-finding interview is a serious violation to the freedom of access to information and following the matters of public concern".

ANHRI added that "the judiciary sentence against "Ibrahim" aims to intimidate him and silence him in order to don't complete his investigations related to the raping crimes, conducted by the army and other sexual violations".

ANHRI is surprised by the arrest of the rape victim while the investigation still going in relation with this crime in addition to pressing the fabricated charges of insulting the state's institutions. Moreover, accusing the journalist of entering the house of the woman while her husband is absent".

ANHRI draws the attention that the legal procedures adopted by the court are illegal against the journalist which included holding him and banning him for accessing to lawyer, before it allowed him after that.

ANHRI values the sought of the lawyers of "Ibrahim" to appeal and also values the sought of the Shiekh "Nour Barood Ghorhan" the speaker of the Somalia Muslims Scholars, in which he calls on launching awareness initiatives related to the crime of rape and draft deterrent penalties related to such crime".

Also available in : اÙ„عربية

ANHRI calls on the dropping of all the unjust sentences issued by the court against the journalist and the rape victim, in addition to conducting an immediate investigation in the rape fact and other similar facts in which the army men were involved. ANHRI calls on the government to do its role in protecting the rights and freedoms of the citizens at the same time in which the government seeks to be internationally recognized as the government of the country.

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