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Algerian journalist Khaled Drareni jailed for two years

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RYAD KRAMDI/AFP or licensors


Algerian journalist Khaled Drareni received a two-year prison sentence at his appeal hearing on Tuesday for his coverage of the anti-government protests.

Rights groups have condemned the verdict as an attack on press freedom as the country has been rocked by demonstrations for the last year.

The 40-year-old journalist was arrested on March 29 on charges such as “endangering national unity” after covering demonstrations by the so-called “Hirak” protest movement.

In August he was handed a three-year jail term.

Drareni is a correspondent for French-language channel TV5 Monde and an editor at the Casbah Tribune news site.

Algeria's judiciary has stepped up prosecutions journalists and activists in recent months.

"We are outraged by the blind stubbornness of the Algerian judges who have just condemned (Drareni) to 2 years in prison," Reporters Without Borders secretary-general Christophe Deloire tweeted after the verdict was announced.

"Khaled's detention proves the regime locks itself into a logic of absurd, unfair and violent repression."

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