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Benin's opposition figure on trial for terrorism charges

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The lawyer for Benin opposition leader Reckya Madougou has slammed her trial on terrorism charges as based on 'political accusation'

The lawyer said his client's case "is completely empty", adding that it is based "exclusively" on a "political accusation." Madougou faces a 20-year sentence if found guilty of financing terrorism and acts of terrorism among other charges.

"If the trial is fair, the judges will have no choice but to see that there is absolutely nothing to accuse our client of the facts for which she is being prosecuted today. The file is completely empty and has been fabricated because it is exclusively a political accusation," said Antoine Vey, Reckya Madougou's lawyer.

The leader of Benin's largest opposition party and first female presidential candidate in the last presidential election was arrested in March and is accused of "planning to assassinate several political figures", according to a government spokesman.

" Her conditions of detention are very difficult, she is deprived of any contact with the outside world except for her lawyers, and so I would be happy to be able to see her again tomorrow to be able to speak with her and to condemn once again the absolutely unjust and degrading treatment she is being subjected to," said Antoine Vey, Reckya Madougou's lawyer.

The 46-year-old head of the opposition the Les Démocrates party was indicted for financing terrorism.

Reckya was sentenced to 20 years in prison.

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