Amnesty appeals to help journalists

Amnesty International is urging UK journalists to write to the authorities in three countries to highlight the plight of three journalists who are being persecuted for their work.

Firas Nassuh Salim Al-Majali, a Jordanian journalist working with the Qatar Television Network, was convicted and sentenced to death on 22 October 2002 on charges of spying for Jordanian intelligence.

Amnesty believes he may be being punished because of the diplomatic rift between Qatar and Jordan.

The second journalist, Clara Britos, owner and editor of the monthly newspaper La Tapa in Guernica, Buenos Aires province, Argentina, has reportedly been subjected to death threats and intimidation by the local authorities after publishing an article in her newspaper highlighting corruption.

The third journalist, Edward Terso Lado, who works for the English language newspaper the Khartoum Monitor in Sudan, was arrested on 11 March at the newspaper’s offices. He has not been charged with any offence, and is reportedly being held incommunicado at an unknown location.

Mark Chavunduka, a Zimbabwean journalist who was detained and tortured in 1999, said: “It’s support from organisations like Amnesty International that has kept people like us going. If there is no support and if people feel there is no watchdog keeping an eye over the authorities, then the authorities will continue to do what they like.”

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