Burundian journalist Egide Mwemero is facing danger of extradition back to his country of origin.
Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and its partner in the DRC, Journalist in Danger (JED), have condemned steps taken to extradite Mwemero back to Burundi.
They have called on the Congolese authorities to prevent his extradition.The Burundian authorities are known to be harsh on journalists with many facing persecutions.
He has never been taken before a judge and in fact, he is not legally accused of committing any crime.
Mwenmero is a technician with Radio Publique Africaine (RPA), a Burundian radio station which was banned in April. He was arrested two and half months ago in Uvira, a town in the eastern DRC very close to the Burundian border.
RSF reports he was arrested by members of the National Intelligence Agency (ANR) while visiting the studios of Le Messager du People, a radio station that had for some time been broadcasting a political news programme produced by RPA and targeting all listeners in Burundi.
Mwenmero was taken to the Congolese capital, Kinshasa, where he is being held.
“It was already bad enough that the Congolese authorities placed Egide Mwemero in detention without any justification,” Reporters Without Borders Secretary-General, Christophe Deloire, said.
“He has never been taken before a judge and in fact, he is not legally accused of committing any crime,” RPA director Bob Rugurika said.
According to RSF, intimidation of journalists and media censorship are standard practices in the DRC while the situation is terrifying in Burundi.In the 2015 Reporters Without Borders press freedom index, Burundi and DRC are ranked 145 and 150 respectively.