Last Updated: Friday, 26 December 2014, 13:50 GMT

Freedom of Expression in Eastern Africa: Newsletter

Publisher Article 19
Publication Date 8 November 2012
Cite as Article 19, Freedom of Expression in Eastern Africa: Newsletter, 8 November 2012, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/50a3a7072.html [accessed 29 December 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

This monthly newsletter provides a snapshot of cases of violence against journalists in Rwanda, Somalia, Eritrea and Ethiopia. It was compiled by ARTICLE 19 Eastern Africa with the assistance of its partners in the respective countries. Funding support has been provided by the European Union (EU), however the content of the newsletter does not reflect the opinion of the EU.

Monthly focus: After a series of attacks targeting journalists in Somalia, some of them have opted to flee the country while others have stopped practicing journalism. 18 journalists have so far being killed in Somalia this year.

SOMALIA 

TV journalist killed

Universal TV journalist, Ahmed Farah Llyas also known as "Saakin" was gunned down when he was heading home from work by unknown men. Somali security forces arrived immediately but they have not identified the killers yet.

Radio journalist killed

Radio Shabelle journalist Mohamed Mohamud Turyare died while receiving treatment in hospital after being shot four times in the chest and the abdomen. 

Comedian murdered in Mogadishu

Warsame Shire Awale, a playwright and comedian working for Kulmiye News Network (KKN) was shot dead by unknown gunmen near his home in the district of Waberi in Mogadishu, bringing the number of dead media workers in Somalia to 18 this year. 

Journalists detained in Kenya 

Three Horn Cable TV Journalists, Abdifitah Mohamed, Abdiaziz Ibrahim Ali and Ahmed Abdirahman Heybe were arrested on 30 September 2012 around 2:00pm local time when covering a grenade attack at the Anglican church at Juja road Pangani in the outskirts of Eastleigh neighborhood  in Nairobi. The grenade attack killed at least one person and wounded 5 others. The three exiled journalists were released without being charged.

Journalists attacked for writing favourable stories on new prime minister

Police attacked four journalists in Lasacood in the semi autonomous region of Somaliland. ARTICLE 19 partners in Somalia say Ahmed Sakiinn (Universal TV), Abdikarm Olol (TV 3) and Mohamed Cansuur (Somalisat TV) were beaten by police while in custody for writing stories welcoming the new prime minister of Somalia, Abdi Farah Shirdoon. They were later released and warned not to write such positive stories. 

Government closes radio station in Puntland

The government of Puntland shut down Horseed Radio in Boosaaso in the Northeastern region of Bari for allegedly "spreading false news" with the aim of "destabilizing peace and security in Puntland".  The regional police chief, Osman Afdalow acknowledged giving the closure order that also blocked access to the radio's website. The Media Association of Puntland, an ARTICLE 19 partner, however alleged that the closure was prompted by a series of critical broadcasts aired by Horseed Radio accusing President Abdirhaman Farole of wanting to delay the January 2013 elections until 2014. 

Two Journalists arrested in Mogadishu

Somali security forces arrested Kulmiye Radio correspondent, Jama Ukun, and Qadar Mohamoud Hareed, who had worked for Ergo Radio and Radio Voice of Peace. The two journalists were arrested in Mogadishu on suspicion of being affiliated to al-Shabaab after they both fled Kismayo when African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) soldiers took over the city. They were later released. 

Journalists intimidated by local administration

Journalists for Radio Shabeele, Kulmiye, Royal TV, Horn TV and Universal TV stopped working after the local administration of Galmudug in South of Galka'yo persistently interfered with their work. According to ARTICLE 19 partners in Somalia, there has been a power struggle between various factions of the Galmudug administration and each wanted favour with the media. However, the officials threatened the journalists when they refused to heed to their demands. 

Rwanda

Freelance journalist beaten

A freelance photojournalist was allegedly beaten by Willy Ndahiro, a former security officer and currently an established actor. Apparently, the photojournalist had taken pictures of Ndahiro and published them without authorisation. The journalist suffered severe chest pains.

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