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Rally for jailed journalist in Algeria

AP PHOTO/Toufik Doudou, File   -  
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Toufik Doudou/Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Algeria

Demonstrators in Algiers are calling for international pressure to help get Algerian journalist Khaled Drareni out of jail.

The journalist, who is 40, was sentenced on August twenty-fourth to three years in prison. He had been in detention since March.

"The profession and journalists are mobilized to demand the release of Khaled Drareni," Amar Belho uchet, an Algerian journalist and former director of the French-language daily El Watan, explained.

"Khaled Drareni, his place is not in prison, his place is in the newsroom of his site, his place is with his journalists. It is intolerable that he still remains in prison today."

"The Khaled Drareni Support Committee today organized this rally for press freedom, for the freedom of Khaled Drareni who was, as we know, sentenced to three years in prison," Kenza Khatto, a journalist, said.

"It is an unjust and cruel condemnation, it is a political condemnation, if we want to be honest."

Drareni is a newspaper editor and a correspondent for French TV.

He has been charged of "inciting an unarmed gathering" and "endangering national unity" after covering protests of the Hirak opposition movement, which has marched against the government for more than a year.

Reporters Without Borders has condemned his sentence as "arbitrary, absurd and violent".

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