Burundi: Fear after journalist’s arbitrary arrest

Tuesday 26th of July

Burundian journalist Jean Bigiramana has been reported missing since around 1pm on Friday 22 July. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has condemned the arbitrary arrest and demanded respect for press freedom in Burundi.

Jean Bigirimana, a journalist with the newspaper IWACU is the father of two children.

The journalist’s family said he was arrested by members of the Burundian intelligence services in the province of Muramvya. The authorities allege he made regular trips to Rwanda - where he was undertaking journalism training. No legal motive has been given to justify the arrest.

IFJ President Philippe Leruth said: “The kidnapping of Jean Bigirimana without any legal motive by the Burundian authorities is a major attack on freedom of expression. This action illustrates one more time the undermining of press freedom in Burundi and the dangerous situation in which journalists have to work there. The IFJ stands in solidarity with the Bigirimana family and all the other journalists in the country.”

 For more information, please contact IFJ on + 32 2 235 22 16

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