Iraq: Arresting the Team of “Al-Ahwar” Local Channel

Cairo: March 5, 2013

The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI), strongly denounces the arrest of team work of the local channel of “Al-Ahwar” by the Iraqi police after assaulting and destroying their press tools on the background of media-covering the events of “Nasariah” city events in the south of Bagdad.

A police force affiliated to the police station of “Nasariah”, on Tuesday, correspondent to February 26, 2013, arrested the team work of the channel which include “Hamed El-Badri” the TV correspondent and “Hidar Hasan” the photographer in the channel during covering the events of the death of a worker in the project’s site of “Nasariah Mall”. As a prolice officer banned him from entering the location of the event then assaulted him by beating and swearing at him and broke his camera then they were taken to the police station of the town as were hold in custody in Nasriah prison, despite they have shown all the previous authorizations and approvals to do their job.

ANHRI said that “the assault on the journalists during performing their job is a serious violation to the right of freedom of access of information. It is also a humiliation to the freedom of the press and press work, in addition to it is a serious violation to the basic human rights”.

ANHRI said that “the correspondents of the channel weren’t in the process of threating the security or violating the law so they could be arbitrary arrested. However, the physical and verbal assault, can’t be justified, which are out of the professional and constitutional context applied in Iraq regarding to the freedom of the journalists and protecting them”.

ANHIR values the act of the freedom observatory of filing a case against the police officer. ANHRI holds the police station of “Nasariah” morally responsible for the action of the officer that is affiliated to him.

ANHRI demands to effect Article no. 9 of law on protecting the journalists, which stipulate punishing whoever assault a journalist during performing his job or because of it, which is actually happened with the correspondents of the channel. ANHRI demands the immediate and unconditional release of the detained correspondents in the police station of “Nasariah”.

Also available in : العربية

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