Global Report 30.09.05


The European Court of Human Rights has agreed to hear charges that
Russian authorities failed to properly investigate and prosecute the
1994 murder of a Moscow reporter. Dmitri Kholodov, a reporter for the
independent newspaper Moskovsky Komsomolets, was killed in October 1994
after investigating alleged corruption involving highranking military
leaders. Six defendants, four of them military officers, were tried in
Russian courts, but acquitted. The reporter’s parents asked the
Strasbourg court to review the case for alleged human rights
violations. The European court has authority to review the actions of
domestic courts, issue findings and recommendations, and levy monetary


The Committee to Protect Journalists has called for the immediate
release of Tunisian journalist Hamadi Jebali, pictured, who has been on
hunger strike in protest against his 14 years of imprisonment. Jebali,
former editor of Al-Fajr, the now-defunct weekly newspaper of the
banned Islamic Al-Nahda party, was first imprisoned in 1991 for an
article in which he called for the abolition of military tribunals in
Tunisia. Sentenced to 16 years in prison, international human rights
groups monitoring the trial concluded that the proceedings fell far
below international standards of justice. Jebali went on hunger strike
earlier this year in a bid for better prison


A senior Edmonton police officer ran a journalist’s name through a
police computer because the reporter had written a column that
criticised the traffic section he commanded. Staff Sergeant Bill Newton
faces misconduct charges stemming from a stakeout that targeted
Edmonton Sun columnist Kerry Diotte. Staff Sgt Newton told a
disciplinary hearing that he asked a subordinate to run Diotte’s name
through the computer because he wanted to understand the columnist’s
motivation for writing an article that accused police of using photo
radar as a cash cow. Newton claims the reporter’s home was staked out
after the officer received a tip-off – since shown to be false – that
Diotte had been drink-driving that night.


Students at Saint Josef University in Beirut have staged a sit-in
protest against the car bombing that seriously wounded news anchor May
Chidiac. The bomb exploded under the car of Chidiac, a journalist for
anti-Syrian television station the Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation,
in the Christian port city of Jounieh, north of Beirut. Chidiac, one of
several hosts of a daily political talk show at LBC, was taken to
hospital. Her condition is critical. LBC is among the most prominent of anti-Syrian media outlets in the country.


Rwandan authorities have been condemned for seizing copies of a
privately owned newspaper that criticised the government. The Committee
to Protect Journalists called on Rwanda to allow the newspaper, Umuco,
to circulate freely and to release one of its reporters, Jean Leonard
Rugambage, who has been jailed without charge since early September.
Rwandan police say authorities seized copies of Umuco and questioned
its editor, Bonaventure Bizumuremyi, for publishing articles deemed
harmful to the country.

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