Hargeisa, 9 July 2009 – Somalilandpress reporter, Mr. Abdiqani Baynah along with another journalist from Qarannews Hasan Keefkeef have been beaten and briefly detained by the police in Hargeisa this evening. The two journalists were detained while preparing a program about the street children in Somaliland’s capital city Hargeisa.
The police assaulted the two reports while they were interviewing the homeless children next to the Hargeisa’s police headquarter. Police officers confiscated the reporter’s equipment and start beating them with the back of gun butts.
“They took us to the police station, we showed them our press cards but they did not care. They checked all the photos in the cameras and listened to the audio recorder” Said Abdiqani. “I feel pain all over my body because of the beating, I still don’t know why the police officers assaulted us” he concluded.
The two journalists were released after they spent two hours in police custody without any charges against them. This is not the first time the police assaulted reporter Mr. Abdiqani. Early this year he was also beaten by the police in Maansoor hotel when he was trying to cover the general assembly of the ruling party which was taking place in the hotel.
Record of Assaults on the press freedom.
- 13th of March, Nur Ahmed Gagab also from Somaliland Space Channel was beaten up by Presidential guards — he was attacked, kicked, and beaten with gun butts, and knocked to the ground, and left unconsciously. He was treated in a hospital.
On the 28th of March, Mr. Ahmed Saleyban Dhuhul from Horyal radio station – was beaten up and arrested outside the parliament.
15th of May, Mr. Hadis Mohamed Hadis was arrested in Crown Hotel in Hargeisa and then released after few hours. The government said he was taking a photo of governmental offices and run away when the guards wanted to talk to him.
18th of May, Mustafa Mohamed Abdi, a journalist with HadhwanaagNews, also based in Somaliland’s capital Hargeisa was taken into custody without charges — released after few hours.
18th of May, Muna Asa’yr Jama was abused by the Presidential spokesman.
8th of July, Abdiqani Baynax and Qarannews reporter assaulted by police and detained for two hours without charges.