Reporters Without Borders (RSF) has urgently alerted the United Nations following the imprisonment in Algeria of journalist and press boss Ihsane El Kadi.

In response to the imprisonment of the media director Radio M and Maghreb Émergent on December 29, 2022, RSF alerted the UN to the “judicial harassment” suffered by the journalist for three years, denouncing this “ultimate attempt to silence the last independent media in Algeria”, indicates the organization in a plea published this Wednesday on its website.

“By letter dated Tuesday January 3, 2022, RSF urgently seized the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression – Irene Khan – of Ihsane’s detention El Kadi,” adds Reporters Without Borders.

In this official communication, the organization stresses that the arrest of the journalist, on December 24, took place only a few days after the publication of articles critical of the authorities.

This chronology accredits a “political motivation” behind his arrest and a “clear desire to muzzle independent media offering a platform to defenders of freedom of expression”, she adds.

“We ask the UN Special Rapporteur to urgently call on the authorities to respect their international and constitutional obligations. The United Nations must demand the immediate release of Ihsane El Kadi and the outright abandonment of spurious charges that only aim to silence him,” said Antoine Bernard, Director of Advocacy and Assistance of RSF

At the beginning of December 2022, RSF already called on the Algerian authorities to put an end to the judicial harassment targeting the journalist, recalls the organization.

Sentenced to 6 months in prison in June 2022, multiple postponements of his appeal trial or even repeated summonses in November… With his arrest, it is “a new intensification of the intimidation to which the journalist is subject, in violation of the Algerian Constitution which nevertheless enshrines freedom of opinion”, we note.

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Due to a constant increase in threats, intimidation and judicial harassment of journalists, Algeria ranks 134th in the World Press Freedom Index established by RSF in 2022, we conclude.

With MAP

Photo of Diplomatic Morocco