Court Sentences One Year Jail Term To Online Journalist,
2 July, 2011
The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) protests against
the one year jail term sentenced to the online Journalist by
Puntland court in Bosaso on 2nd July, 2011.
Journalist Faysal Mohamed Hassan, Hiiraan Online (www.hiiraan.com)
correspondent in Bosaso was sentenced to one year jail term
by the Puntland court in Bosaso, after he was accused of publishing
false news information.
The lawyer of this journalist, Mohamed Abdi Gurey called the
arrest "Unjust and illegitimate" and said that he
will submit an appeal to the appeals court.
Journalist Faysal Mohamed Hassan, Hiiraan Online correspondent
in Bosaso was arrested on Wednesday 29 June, 2011 around 11:00AM
shortly after he came to Regional Police Division headquarters
in Bosaso to get to know the reason why the police was looking
for him since Tuesday.
A local journalist, a friend of Hassan whose name withheld for
security purposes told NUSOJ that the police officer at the
central station in Bosaso filed the journalist's case as "publishing
a false report on Somali news websites". The reporter Faysal
himself told NUSOJ by telephone on Tuesday night that the police
were looking for him and he was suspicious that they (police)
were following a previous report he published on Hiiraan online.
Two local journalists in Bosaso told me on Wednesday afternoon
that they had contacted to the deputy commander of the Puntland
police Mohamed Said Jaqanaf in Bosaso. They said the commander
told them that he will give details on the journalist's case
by Thursday, but he hinted that the case is relating reports
published by the journalist.
Puntland Minster of information, Ahmed Ali Askar who spoke with
NUSOJ officials in Garowe on Thursday on the case of the journalist,
said "that he did not hear the journalist arrested and
had no any information about the case." He promised that
"he will seek information and will follow it. The minister
also told NUSOJ that he will ask immediate intervention, but
the said intervention was unlikely.
"We protest and condemn against the unjust jail sentence
and call the Puntland officials to release the journalist immediately."
Mr. Burhaan Daahir, the president of the NUSOJ Supreme council
in who was at today's hearing said, "This sounds to us
a means of intimidation to silence the independence voice in
Puntland for sentencing long term jail terms."
Horseed Media FM director Abdifatah Jama Mire was released on
November last year after 86 days of detention in Bosaso, in
the semi-autonomous northeastern region of Puntland. Sentenced
to six years in prison for broadcasting an interview with the
head of a rebel group linked to Al-Qaeda, he was pardoned by
Puntland President Abdirahman Mohamed Farole.