Mauritania ALERT: Journalist arrested

Agents of the Criminal Investigation Division (CID) on May 31, 2002 arrested and detained Nema Oumar, Editor-in-Chief of the Arabic monthly magazine, El Khaima. No reason has been given for the arrest.

The unexplained arrest of journalists and seizure of newspaper publications are a routine part of media practice in Mauritania. On April 12, 2002, Police arrested Mohammed Fall Ould Oumcre, editor of the independent La Tribune weekly newspaper and detained him at the CID Headquarters for nine days. A week later, on April 18, anti-riot police singled out and violently assaulted journalists covering a civil society demonstration.

The MFWA is deeply concerned about the high-risk fate of journalists and media houses in Mauritania. The MFWA urges the government to respect the universally subscribed rights of all persons to the freedoms of speech and expression, and repeal the repressive press laws in the country.

The MFWA requests you to protest against the deteriorating state of media freedom in Mauritania.

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