Monday, April 28, 2014

9 Ethiopian Journalist and bloggers appeared in Criminal Court

Ababa — Three journalists and six bloggers, who were detained starting late
Friday and Saturday, appeared before court on Sunday April 27.
All six of them appeared before the Federal First Instance Court
First Criminal Bench at Arada and were charged with "Working with foreign
organizations that claim to be human rights activists and agreeing in idea and
receiving finance to incite public violence through social media. The detainees
are charged under three files.
Tesfalem Waldyes, Asmamaw Hailegiorgis and Zelalem Kibiret are
charged under one file. Befekadu Hailu, Mahlet Fantahun and Abel Wabela are
charged under another file. Whereas Atinafu Birhane, Natinael Feleke and Edom
Kassaye are charged in a third file. The hearing was presided by a judge Liya
Police alleged that the suspects have been disseminating
information via social media, internet and websites that destabilizes nation.
Though police requested the court for 15 additional days for
investigation, the court allowed only 10 and 11 days.
Asked about the detainees' condition and the reason for their
arrested, Shimelis Kemal, deputy head of Government Communication Affairs
Office (GCAO) with a state ministerial portfolio, told The Reporter that he did
not know anything but indicated that he would try to assess the matter.
All six bloggers were arrested at night by armed security forces
and taken from their homes to the Federal Police Crime Investigation Sector

One of the detainees, Tesfalem Waldyes, is a journalist who
occasionally writes for Fortune - the business weekly newspaper - and Addis
Standard magazine.

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