Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Somaliland authorities shut down independent papers

Nairobi, April 8, 2014-Police in the semi-autonomous republic of Somaliland on Thursday raided the Hargeisa offices of the independent Somali-language paper Haatuf and its sister English-language weekly, Somaliland Times, and suspended them indefinitely, according to local journalists and news reports.
The police cited a court order that said the papers should be shut down for publishing false news and insulting officials, according to the same sources. Haatuf publishes six days a week. Local journalists and news reports suggested the closure was linked to a series of critical reports in the publicationsthat alleged government corruption and the mishandling of finances.
Court authorities did not provide an appeal process for the papers' shutdown, local journalists told CPJ. By Somaliland law, court decisions are subject to appeal, according to Guleid Ahmed, a lawyer and chairman of Somaliland's Human Rights Center, a human rights advocacy group based in Hargeisa. Article 28 obliges the Somaliland constitution to give parties equal opportunity before the judiciary, according to a statement by the Human Rights Center. Article 32 of the constitution forbids acts that suppress the media, the statement said.
The steps follow the shutting down of other news outlets. In February, authorities banned indefinitely the private U.K.-based broadcaster Universal TV from airing in Somaliland after it broadcasta comedy program that ridiculed the president, according to local journalists and reports. On December 13, police raided and closed indefinitely the daily Hubaal citing a court order that claimed the publication promoted insecurity in the nation. The court did not allow for an appeal process, according to local journalists. Both outlets are still shut down.
"Judging by these steps to close several news outlets, the Somaliland government is headed toward one of the worst crackdowns on the press since independence," said CPJ East Africa Representative Tom Rhodes. "We call on authorities to allow Haatuf and the Somaliland Times to resume publishing immediately."
CPJ is an independent, nonprofit organization that works to safeguard press freedom worldwide.
Sue Valentine
Africa Program Coordinator
Mohamed Keita
Africa Advocacy Coordinator
Tel. +1.212.465.1004 ext. 117
Email: mkeita@cpj.org
Tom Rhodes
East Africa Representative
Email: trhodes@cpj.org
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Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Somali police should release Sky FM journalist

Somali police should release Sky FM journalist
Nairobi, March 31, 2014-The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Somali authorities in the capital, Mogadishu, to release a radio journalist who has been held without charge since Sunday. Nuradin Hassan is an editor of Sky FM, as well as a news presenter, according to news reports and Sky FM.
Mohamed Khalif, chief inspector of the Central Investigations Department (CID), asked Nuradin to report to the CID for questioning on Sunday, but the journalist was detained when he arrived, Sky FM Director Mohamed Muse told CPJ.
News reports and local journalists, including Mohamed, said Nuradin was detained in connection with his report on Sky FM that said the passport of a British citizen-who works as an adviser to the prime minister-briefly went missing, disrupting his travel plans with the prime minister. Authorities said Nuradin had reported misleading information and questioned the journalist on how Sky FM obtained its information, reports said.
"Somali authorities continually harass journalists who portray the government in a negative light," said CPJ East Africa Representative Tom Rhodes. "We call on the government to release Nuradin Hassan immediately."
Abdirahman Omar, a spokesman for the government, told CPJ that Information Minister Mustafa Dhuholow was looking into the case.
Sky FM is a sister radio station to Radio Shabelle and part of the Shabelle Media Network. The Shabelle Media Network has often been harassed and its journalists targeted. In October 2013, heavily armed security forces raided its offices, arrested three dozen staff members, and confiscated equipment. In the past five years, unknown gunmen have killed at least nine journalists working for the Shabelle Media Network, according to CPJ research.
CPJ is an independent, nonprofit organization that works to safeguard press freedom worldwide.
Sue Valentine
Africa Program Coordinator
Mohamed Keita
Africa Advocacy Coordinator
Tel. +1.212.465.1004 ext. 117
Email: mkeita@cpj.org
Tom Rhodes
East Africa Consultant
Email: trhodes@cpj.org

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Somali Media Freedom Defender (SMFD) mourns for the death of the Somali journalist who was sustaining severe injuries at the Madina Hospital in Mogadishu on 26 October 2013 around 10:30pm.

Assailants shot more than 6 times at journalist, Mohamed Mohamoud “TImacade”, on 22 October 2013 near his home in Madina neighborhood.
Late, Mohamed Mohamoud worked for the Universal television, a privately owned Television station based in London.
SMFD sends its sincere sympathies and condolences to the Somali media fraternity, especially the families, friends and colleagues of late Mohamed Mohamoud Timacade.
SMFD calls for the Somali government to end the impunity and bring the killers to book.
“I send my sincere condolences to the families, friends and colleagues of late Timacade,” Mohamed Ibrahim, Secretary-General of the National Union of Somali Journalists, “The impunity is driving us crazy, we demand from the Somali government to end the impunity and bring the killers to book once and for all.”

Late Timacade becomes the seventh journalist killed in Somalia this year alone and left behind a wife and children.

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Mohamed Mohamud Timacade, a reporter with London-based Smali TV, was shot several times in the neck, chest and shoulder

MOGADISHU (Oct 22, 2013): Gunmen seriously wounded a Somali television journalist in the capital Mogadishu on Tuesday, police said, the latest in a string of attacks on reporters in the conflict-wracked country.
Mohamed Mohamud Timacade, a reporter with London-based Somali-language Universal TV, was shot several times in the neck, chest and shoulder.
The attackers sprayed the reporter's car with bullets.
"The journalist was shot and seriously wounded... he has been rushed to hospital," said Mohamed Ilkayare, a police officer who was at the scene of the attack.

Timacade was taken to Mogadishu's Medina hospital, which specialises in trauma surgery.
"He was rushed into surgery with several gunshot wounds in the chest and neck," said Ayan Mohamed, a medical worker at the hospital.
Eighteen media professionals were killed in Somalia in 2012 -- the east African country's deadliest year on record, according to Reporters Without Borders (MSF) -- and more than 50 have been killed in the last six years.
At least six media workers have been killed this year.
Attacks on journalists are often blamed on Islamist Shebab fighters battling the internationally-backed government, but some are also believed to be linked to a settling of scores within the multiple factions in power.
Somalia's journalist union condemned the "heinous assassination attempt" and called for blood donations with the reporter due to undergo further rounds of surgery.
"We condemn this shocking attack... another direct attack against the free media in Somalia," union secretary-general Mohamed Ibrahim said in a statement, calling for an investigation to catch the attackers. – AFP

Sunday, 15 September 2013

Somali Media Freedom Defender sends many thanks to ARTICLE 19 for their kind support of Mr. Mascuud

Somali Media Freedom Defender sends many thanks to ARTICLE 19 for their kind support  of  Mr. Mascuud Abdulahi Aadan, Somali journalist victim who is in Nairobi, Kenya and other organizations which participated that Mascud to be airlifted to Nairobi where the bullet was removed.

Saturday, 17 August 2013

Perpetrators Killing Somali Journalists Must Be Brought To Justice

Mogadishu Somali technician  working for the state run radio Mogadishu and SNTV was shot in Shibis, one of Mogadishu districts early morning on Saturday according to relatives.

Eng. Ahmed Sharif Hussein, a long time radio technician was shot by three men armed with pistols in front of his home in Shibis. He was shot four times at the chest, heart and stomach by a time when he departed his residence to his work place.

Sharif’s injuries were taken to Kaysaney hospital where unfortunately he has died a few minutes later

Radio Mogadishu’s director Abdirahim Isse Addow said that the men who shot the radio technician disgusted as school students and soon escaped from the crime scene.

 He was well-known official in the Somali ministry information. The deceased previously worked with Hornafrik, Radio Bandair and other different media platforms in the world.

This  assassination coincided  half an hour later after Somali military court executed death penalty against nvicted of the killing against radio journalist late Hassan Yusuf Absuge who was assassinated on September 2012 in Mogadishu’s Yashiid  district.

Somali Media Freedom Defender condemning the killing of late Sharif and sent condolence to all grieved family and relatives of Ahmed Sharif Hussein.
Somali all exiled journalists are kindly calling Somali Federal government to take investigation and bring perpetrators to justice soon.

Source:- Somali Media Freedom Defender

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Somali Prime Minister calls for calm and declares “unshakeable” commitment to press freedom

His Excellency Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon emphasized today the government's “shakeable” commitment to press freedom and advised against a rush to judgement before the Media Law was sent to parliament.

“There has been a good deal of overexcited reporting about the Media Law in recent days, much of it ill-informed,” the Prime Minister said. “The suggestion that it was going to require journalists to be aged 40 or over, for example, owes more to fantasy fiction than accurate reporting. We need calm discussion and sensible consultations and this is how we are proceeding with a series of consultations with all interested stakeholders.”

The Prime Minister stressed that the Council of Ministers had only approved the Media Law subject to amendments being made by the Minister of Information Abdullahi Elmoge Hersi. Once those were incorporated the draft legislation would then be sent to parliament for further debate and consultation, giving additional scope for amendments.

The Prime Minister, together with the Minister of Information and his Deputy Minister Abdishakur Ali Mire, hosted an iftar dinner for Somali journalists on 18 July specifically so they could raise their issues and concerns regarding the draft Media Law.

Mohammed Ibrahim, Secretary-General of the National Union of Somali Journalists, thanked the Prime Minister for the opportunity to discuss these issues. He and a number of Somali journalists raised a number of issues, including protection of sources, the independence of the National Media Council, the Council’s powers, access to information and lifting the suspension of journalists if convicted.

“I am on record numerous times on the subject of defending press freedom and journalist's rights and my government's commitment to this is shakeable,” the Prime Minister said. “I would like to assure Somali journalists and the international community alike that there is plenty of time for further consultations on and amendments to the Media Law.

We are fully aware of concerns in this area and are determined to proceed on the basis of international best practice so that press freedom in Somalia is properly enshrined in law.”

Source; Jowhar