15 August 2014

Somalia: Shabelle Radio in Mogadishu Forced Off-Air and Raided By Government Soldiers

Photo: Human Rights Watch
Journalists in Mogadishu, Somalia, protest the ongoing detention of freelance journalist Abdiaziz Abdinur Ibrahim who has been held without charge by Somali officials since January 10, 2013.

Intelligence officers and soldiers of the Somali National Intelligence & Security Agency have this morning stormed and raided the private compound of Shabelle Media Network in Mogadishu.

The government soldiers are currently in control and have seized the compound building and cordoning off the roads that lead to Shabelle Media Network's headquarters in Mogadishu's Hodan district.

A number of journalists and media workers were arrested in the raid and are reported to currently being held in detention in the compound and not transferred to Criminal Investigations Department (CID) in Mogadishu as procedure.

The Chairman of Shabelle Media Network, Abdimaalik Yusuf Mohamud, is among the people arrested and being detained by intelligence officers and government soldiers. Witnesses described media equipment was being looted by "careless government soldiers".

Shabelle Media Network was also raided by National Intelligence & Security Agency officers on the 26th October 2013 in which several journalists were detained and the equipment of the media outlet was trashed; causing it to stay off-air for a month. 36 employees were held in detention at that time and then later released.

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