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Ethiopian Journalist Reeyot Alemu Has Been in Jail for 1,000 Days
Written by Ndesanjo Macha On 17 March 2014 @ 21:13 pm | 5 Comments
In Citizen Media, English, Ethiopia, Feature, Human Rights, Media & Journalism, Politics, Sub-Saharan Africa, Weblog
March 16, 2014 marked the 1,000th day of imprisonment for Ethiopian journalist Reeyot Alemu . She is serving a five-year sentence after she was found guilty on terrorism charges in January 2012.
Reeyot, an English teacher, is the recipient of the UNESCO-Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize , the Hellman/Hammett award,  and the International Women's Media Foundation Courage in Journalism Award .
According to the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) , the Ethiopian government has convicted 11 independent journalists and bloggers including Reeyot and Eskinder Nega  under a sweeping anti-terrorism law since 2011. Among those jailed are two Swedish journalists  who are serving an 11-year sentence for allegedly supporting an ethnic Somali rebel group.
In this blog post , blogger BefeQadu Z Hailu described the plight of imprisoned Ethiopian journalists:
If the objective of imprisonment is to correct the convicted ones, then to encourage reading and education should be one of the tools to meet the objective. In Kality prison both are allowed but not easily to these journalists and others who are convicted in relation to ‘terrorism’.
These prisoners are not allowed to get books. Eskinder says, “Especially those kinds of books that have titles combining words of ‘Ethiopia’ and ‘history’ are not allowed in.” The same is true to the ward of Reeyot Alemu and others such as Wubshet Taye, Bekele Gerba, etc.
Local independent newspapers and magazines are not also allowed in; Eskinder further explained it to me that even News TV channels like BBC and Aljazeera are not allowed to be viewed in zones where he and others are imprisoned.
Reeyot Alemu, after a tough struggle with the prison admins and after the media revealed the story, is now allowed to get distance education. But, it is still difficult for her to get supplementary books other than the books directly sent to her from the College.
Twitter users sent out tweets using the hashtag #ReeyotAlemu  to express their support for the jailed journalist. Below are a sample of tweets:
— vineetkhare (@vineetkhare) March 16, 2014 
— MediaET (@MediaETHIOPIA) March 16, 2014 
#ReeyotAlemu : why are 3rd world dictators afraid of journos more than death itself? Is a sign of weakness. Scared of ideas & idea people!
— MediaET (@MediaETHIOPIA) March 16, 2014 
— Ana Gomes, MEP (@AnaGomesMEP) March 16, 2014 
— EPHREM SHAUL (@eph_sh) March 15, 2014 
— alex (@alexbiruk) March 16, 2014 
Article printed from Global Voices: https://globalvoices.org
URL to article: https://globalvoices.org/2014/03/17/ethiopian-journalist-reeyot-alemu-has-been-in-jail-for-1000-days/
URLs in this post:
 Reeyot Alemu: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reeyot_Alemu
 the UNESCO-Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UNESCO/Guillermo_Cano_World_Press_Freedom_Prize
 the Hellman/Hammett award,: http://www.hrw.org/news/2012/12/20/ethiopia-4-journalists-win-free-speech-prize
 the International Women's Media Foundation Courage in Journalism Award: http://www.iwmf.org/reeyot-alemu-2012-courage-in-journalism-award/
 the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ): http://www.freedomhouse.org/report/freedom-press/2013/ethiopia
 Eskinder Nega: https://globalvoicesonline.org/2012/09/17/ethiopia-remembering-jailed-dissident-blogger-eskinder-nega/
 two Swedish journalists: https://globalvoicesonline.org/2011/12/28/ethiopia-swedish-journalists-handed-11-year-prison-sentence/
 this blog post: http://www.befeqe.com/2013/09/Ethiopia-has-a-priosn-in-a-prison.html?spref=tw
 #ReeyotAlemu: https://twitter.com/search?q=%23ReeyotAlemu&src=hash
 @LisaMisol: https://twitter.com/LisaMisol
 #Ethiopia: https://twitter.com/search?q=%23Ethiopia&src=hash
 March 16, 2014: https://twitter.com/vineetkhare/statuses/445283964614639616
 #EPRDF: https://twitter.com/search?q=%23EPRDF&src=hash
 March 16, 2014: https://twitter.com/MediaETHIOPIA/statuses/445230568486080512
 March 16, 2014: https://twitter.com/MediaETHIOPIA/statuses/445232321583931392
 @SJLambrinidis: https://twitter.com/SJLambrinidis
 @EU: https://twitter.com/EU
 March 16, 2014: https://twitter.com/AnaGomesMEP/statuses/445144984820662272
 #ethiopia: https://twitter.com/search?q=%23ethiopia&src=hash
 @AnaGomesMEP: https://twitter.com/AnaGomesMEP
 @amnesty: https://twitter.com/amnesty
 March 15, 2014: https://twitter.com/eph_sh/statuses/444933743548313600
 #journalism: https://twitter.com/search?q=%23journalism&src=hash
 #health: https://twitter.com/search?q=%23health&src=hash
 #women: https://twitter.com/search?q=%23women&src=hash
 pic.twitter.com/UyzmniGrb6: http://t.co/UyzmniGrb6
 March 16, 2014: https://twitter.com/alexbiruk/statuses/445286617260261376
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