Washington, D.C., March 9, 2020 — Algerian authorities should immediately release journalist and press freedom advocate Khaled Drareni, a correspondent for global press freedom group Reporters Without Borders (RSF) who has been in custody since March 7, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today.
Today, a national prosecutor at the Sidi M’Hamed Court in Algiers ordered Drareni to remain in detention pending an investigation into allegations of “assembly without a permit,” according to news reports.
“Khaled Drareni works tirelessly to cover the news for his fellow Algerians and for an international audience; his reward should not be an arbitrary detention on spurious charges,” said CPJ’s Middle East and North Africa Program Coordinator Sherif Mansour. “Algerian authorities must release Drareni immediately, and ensure that all journalists can do their jobs without risking imprisonment.”
Drareni is also a co-founder of the Casbah Tribune, a news website, and For the Rescue of the Algerian Press, a media freedom organization.
At the time of CPJ’s most recent global census, three journalists were imprisoned in Algeria in relation to their work.