Ameriques Asie Europe Moyen-Orient Internet Nations unies
Somalia26 June 2008

Puntland authorities free radio station director after holding him overnight

Abdulkadir Mohammed Nunow, the director of Bosaso-based Radio Horseed and a correspondent of Voice of America’s Somali-language service, was released at 11 a.m. today after being held overnight without being charged, Reporters Without Borders has learned from Omar Faruk Osman, the secretary-general of partner organisation in Somalia, the National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ).

26.06 - Puntland radio station director arrested over report about foreign tourists held hostage

Reporters Without Borders calls on the authorities of the semi-autonomous northeastern territory of Puntland to release Abdulkadir Mohammed Nunow, the director of privately-owned Radio Horseed, who was arrested yesterday in Bosaso after broadcasting a report about foreign tourists held hostage in a region claimed by both Puntland and the neighbouring breakaway state of Somaliland.

“This latest arbitrary arrest of a journalist in Puntland has heavy political connotations,” Reporters Without Borders said. “Puntland’s authorities do not tolerate interviews with their rivals, not even to obtain information about the territories their rivals control. Nunow is the victim of the local government’s propaganda strategy and refusal to recognise reality. His arrest is designed solely to intimidate and send a threatening signal to his fellow journalists.”

Nunow, who is also Bosaso correspondent of the Somali-language service of the US government’s Voice of America radio station, was arrested in his office at 2:10 p.m. yesterday by soldiers acting on the orders of Abdullahi Said Samatar, Puntland’s security minister.

The Reporters Without Borders partner organisation in Somalia, the National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) said his arrest was prompted by a report on 23 June about a group of western tourists who were kidnapped off Puntland’s northern coast by pirates. It included an interview with a Somaliland military commander in Las Qoray, a disputed coastal town in Sanag, the region where the hostages are apparently being held. Somaliland’s army currently controls the town.

In this country
3 June - Somalia
Alarm at TV station director’s abduction near Mogadishu
26 May - Somalia
Radio reporter shot by militia dies of injuries, fourth journalist to be killed this year
22 May - Somalia
Journalist killed in fighting between government forces and islamist militants
29 April - Somalia
Independent news agency launched in Djibouti aims to be reliable source of news about Somalia
27 April - Somalia
Islamist militia closes radio station, arrests three journalists

in the annual report
Somalia - Annual Report 2008
Somalia - Annual Report
Somalia - Annual report 206

Africa press releases
27 May - Gabon
Government imposes news blackout on President Bongo’s health
22 May - Madagascar
Radio Mada reporter freed after two weeks in detention
22 May - Sierra Leone
Newspaper publisher is victim of judicial extortion

africa archives

18 March 2009 - Democratic Republic of Congo
“Bukavu, murder city”: investigation report into murders of journalists in the capital of Sud-Kivu
21 May 2008 - Eritrea
Naizghi Kiflu, the dictatorship’s eminence grise
6 March 2008 - Kenya
"How far to go ?" Kenya’s media caught in the turmoil of a failed election

Sign the petitions
Sign the petition for the release of ten Eritrean journalists