Journalist freed after finally agreeing to pay bail

first_img“Kuwait was the first Arab country to decriminalise press offences in 2006 and was the leading Middle Eastern country in the 2009 Reporters Without Borders press freedom index, but now more and more lawsuits are being brought against journalists because of internal political tension,” Reporters Without Borders said. Courts uphold newspaper’s closure, increase blogger’s jail term As Kuwait’s media legislation has decriminalised defamation, Al-Jassem maintains that he cannot legally be detained for refusing to pay bail in this case. New Cyber Crimes Law restricts free expression and targets online activists September 5, 2014 Find out more Al-Jassem told Reporters Without Borders on 1 October that he had also referred to the prime minister’s readiness to file lawsuits and his “fondness for the courts.” He added: “The prime minister knows he is in a tough spot domestically. He is trying to survive despite the absurd way he has handled things, and to this end he is trying to control the media. He owns four newspapers and two TV stations, and yet he is even ready to pay for favourable stories. I don’t need his money and I say what I think about Kuwaiti politics.” News to go further Follow the news on Kuwait January 21, 2016 Find out more After being held by police for 12 days at the headquarters of the criminal investigation department in Kuwait City, journalist Mohammed Al-Jassem appeared in court again this morning and was able to challenge the legality of his detention and the way the investigation has been conducted.At the end of a hearing of more than two hours, the court ordered his release on bail of 1,000 dinars (2,300 euros) and set another hearing for 10 December. This time he paid the bail and was released. He had previously refused to pay bail on the grounds that his detention was illegal.————————————-24.11.09 – Journalist held as a result of libel action by prime ministerKuwait’s prosecutor general yesterday ordered the police to continue holding journalist Mohammed Abdel Qader Al-Jassem at the headquarters of the criminal investigation department after he was take in for questioning the day before in connection with a libel suit by the prime minister and then refused to pay bail of 1,000 dinars (2,345 euros). Al-Jassem has asked his lawyer, Hammoud Al-Hajeri, to file a complaint accusing the prosecutor general of illegal detention. February 23, 2015 Find out more News Help by sharing this information Prime Minister Nasser Mohammed filed his libel action before prosecutor general Hamid Al-Othman on 2 September. It names Al-Jassem and Abdelhamid Da’ass, the editor of the daily Al-Alam Al-Yaoum, and concerns a 16 August article accusing the prime minister of encouraging religious tension in order to hold on to his job. Receive email alerts News Organisation KuwaitMiddle East – North Africa News “The 2006 press law reform abolished imprisonment for journalists but defamation actions are often being dealt with under the criminal code,” the press freedom organisation continued. “Some politicians are taking advantage of this to paralyse criticism. We urge the prosecutor general to release Al-Jassem.” December 3, 2009 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Journalist freed after finally agreeing to pay bail KuwaitMiddle East – North Africa When question by the prosecutor general a week later, the prime minister’s lawyer, Imad Al-Saif, maintained that Al-Jassem’s article had defamed his client. Defamation can still be punished under the criminal code by up to two years in prison and a heavy fine. Popular blogger charged with blasphemy RSF_en last_img read more