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Charged Gambian journalist escapes from hospital


A Gambian journalist standing trial for sedition has escaped from a hospital where he was receiving treatment.

Alagie Ceesay has reportedly been in police custody since June last year.

He is charged with six counts of sedition and publication of false news with the intent to cause fear and alarm among the public.

Ceesay a managing director of an independent radio station has been hospitalized a couple of times.

His request to be released on bail has been denied four times despite his health problems and demands from Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and the Committee to Protect Journalists.

Information about his escape became public when he failed to show up in court on Wednesday as expected.

Ceesay was arrested on July 2 after he privately shared by phone a picture with a gun being pointed toward an image of President Yahya Jammeh.

Last week word leaked from #Gambia that journalist Alagie Ceesay had been killed in custody. Now, he has “escaped.” pic.twitter.com/B5WszSL2qF

— Jeffrey Smith (@Smith_JeffreyT) April 22, 2016

According to Reporters Without Borders, President Jammeh, has created a climate of terror which does not allow freedom of the press.

Jammeh who has ruled the small west African nation for over two decades is said to do so with an iron fist.

The country ranked 145 out of 180 countries on the 2016 World Press Freedom Index.

Earlier in the week, dozens of political activists were charged for orchestrating a protest that called for free speech and electoral reforms.


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