New York, February 29, 2008—CPJ condemns the arbitrary arrest of two popular online editors without charge. The two were detained and interrogated for 24 hours in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, on February 18, in what observers of the case say was a politically motivated attempt to shutter the site.
The two young editors, Maxence Mello and Mike Mushi, aged 21 and 18 respectively, host the extremely popular Jambo Forums, a public discussion site with more than 2,000 members and 6 million hits in February alone. Topics on the site cover everything from politics to culture to entertainment. Police confiscated three computers used to host their Web site, shutting down the site for five days while the equipment remained under police custody, Mello told CPJ.
New York, January 8, 2008—Police in Dar-es-Salaam said Monday that they had two suspects in custody after armed men stormed the newsroom of a popular vernacular newspaper and seriously injured two top journalists, according to local reporters and news accounts.
Managing Editor Saed Kubenea of the Kiswahili-language Mwana Halisi and veteran journalist Ndimara Tegambwage, a consultant with the weekly, were preparing this week’s edition when three men armed with a machete and an unidentified chemical broke down the newsroom door and assaulted them at 9 p.m. local time Saturday, according to the same sources. The assailants splashed a chemical in Kubenea’s eyes and struck him in the face with a stone, Tegambwage told CPJ. Persistent eye pain forced doctors at Dar-es-Salaam’s main Muhimbili Hospital to transfer Kubenea to India for further treatment, according to local journalists. Tegambwage was hit on the side of the head with a machete, causing a wound requiring 15 stitches.
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