Letter to President Saleh about threats to press freedom

first_img RSF_en September 4, 2007 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Letter to President Saleh about threats to press freedom News Organisation to go further Follow the news on Yemen Reporters Without Borders wrote to President Ali Abdullah Saleh today voicing concern about a decline in press freedom in Yemen that has been highlighted by a physical attack on Abdulkarim Al-Khaiwani, a human rights activist and editor of the newspaper Al-Shura, on 27 August.“Khaiwani was abducted in the middle of the street in the centre of Sana’a by about 10 gunmen as he was leaving the premises of the newspaper Al-Nedaa,” the letter said. “He was then beaten and threatened with death if he continued to publish articles critical of the government. “Despite official denials, its seems that the government’s security services were involved, as Khaiwani clearly recognised one of his abductors as being a member of the group of officers who arrested and manhandled him at his home on 20 June and then took him to the state security prosecutor’s office, where he was held until the following day. Charged with ‘belonging to a terrorist cell’ and ‘publishing false information on the war between government forces and rebels in the northwest,’ he still faces a possible death sentence.”The letter also referred to the case of the newspaper Al Share’a, which was invaded on 30 July by some 10 gunmen who threatened to killed its editor, Naif Hassan. The attack was apparently linked to a complaint filed against the newspaper on 7 July by the defence ministry following a series of controversial articles on the fighting in Sadaa.“We are particularly concerned about the prosecution initiated against Al-Share’a,” the letter said. “The complaint was filed with the State Security Court under article 126 of the criminal code. This is the same court that will try Khaiwani. It is the first time that a newspaper is being prosecuted by this court, whose impartiality is in question.“These prosecutions could set a dangerous precedent, harm relations between the media and the government, and contribute to a deterioration in legislative and constitutional protection for press freedom. Furthermore, the climate of violence will inevitably encourage journalists to censor themselves.”The letter ended by asking President Saleh to do everything necessary to get to the bottom of the attack on Khaiwani and to ensure that he and Al Share’a are tried by an appropriate court, as required by the press and publication law. February 26, 2021 Find out more News Yemeni journalist killed, nine wounded in Aden airport explosions Newscenter_img Receive email alerts Help by sharing this information Fixer for foreign reporters held in Aden for past five months United Nations: press freedom situation “deeply worrying” in Yemen, according to RSF YemenMiddle East – North Africa February 11, 2021 Find out more News YemenMiddle East – North Africa January 6, 2021 Find out morelast_img

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