The Center for Defending Freedom of Journalists denounces the decision to arrest three employees of the Arabic daily newspaper and website al-Hayat. CDFJ calls for “the immediate release” of publisher Daighim Khuraisat, principal editor Diya Khuraisat and editor-in-chief Ramiz Abu Yousef.
CDFJ released a statement yesterday, the 17th of November, announcing that lawyers from the Media Legal Aid Unit (MELAD) apart of CDFJ have taken the journalists’ case. The MELAD lawyers “requested the release of the journalists on bail, however, the General Prosecutor refused the request.” A later appeal of the bail decision was also denied.
CDFJ Executive President Nidal Mansour says that “the Bureau of Legal Interpretation’s decision that slander cases against journalists be tried under the Electronic Crimes Law has allowed for the arrest of and imprisonment of these media professionals and has opened the door wide for further persecution and restriction of journalists through detainment. Journalists are now paying the price of this decision; everyone is now under threat of arrest.”
Mansour called on the Jordanian Parliament to amend the Electronic Crimes Law in order to stop it from being used to restrict press freedom.