youshouldtravel SBI
Published On: Thu, Feb 23rd, 2017

Demand release of STAR TV Director, Mohamed Baashe. Stop arbitrary arrests & detentions

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Mr President

We, the undersigned journalists, friends and supporters of Mohamed Bashe Haji Hassan are writing to ask for the release of STAR TV Director, Mohamed Bashe Haji Hassan currently being held in Hargeisa prison.

Mohamed Bashe is a respected professional who has worked for the STAR TV. He attended an event held at Maansoor Hotel Hargeisa to commemorate the Somaliland National Youth Day, which is the anniversary of 20th February 1982 when the military regime of Siad Barre cracked down students protesting against detention of educators. Mohamed was among the students who participated in the protest. At the event, Mohamed expressed his discontent on the manner the government handled a military base granted to the United Arab Emirates to be established at Berbera. The police accused Mohamed inciting the public and disturbing the public order.

If Mohamed Bashe had any arrest warrant or official charges, he should have been informed immediately. Now what happened to him is clear intimidation and has little to do with the rule of law.

We demand an immediate release of Mohamed Bashe and call for providing all the legal guarantees for a fair trial and for the protection of the journalist’s life, which is now in danger. We also demand that his lawyers and family members be allowed to see him and to be reassured about him. We demand the safeguarding of his dignity, and providing him with the health care he needs.

Mr President, we are calling on you to release all journalists who are behind bars because of their work. Somaliland’s own constitution guarantees freedom of the press, and prohibits prosecutions based on a journalist’s work. The arrest of these reporters has cast a cloud over press and media freedom in Somaliland.

We strongly believe that upholding the rights of journalists and permitting the free flow of information is vital to bringing about greater understanding and serves the best interests of all Somalilanders and the world.

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