Australian freelancer released from police custody

New York, November 14, 2005—Australian freelance journalist Andrew Mueller was released on Sunday after two days in police custody in southwestern Cameroon. Mueller was arrested in the town of Kumbo on Friday after interviewing members of the Southern Cameroon National Council (SCNC), which claims a separate state for Anglophone Cameroonians. He was later transferred to the nearby town of Bamenda.

The journalist told the Committee to Protect Journalists he would travel today under police escort to the southern city of Douala and leave the country for London, where he is based.

Mueller, who arrived in Cameroon more than a week ago, told CPJ that he was conducting research for a book on “unrecognized states.” Police questioned Mueller and recorded statements from him about his activities in Cameroon, he said. They also searched his bag and confiscated documents that had been given to him by interviewees, including some pertaining to the SCNC.

For more information on Mueller’s arrest, see CPJ’s alert: