IFJ Condemns Intimidation as Tunisian Journalists Plan National Union Congress

The International Federation of Journalists warned today the Tunisian authorities against any attempt to intimidate journalists’ leaders in Tunisia. The action follows news that the President of the National Syndicate of Journalists, Lotfi Haji, is being interrogated by the police.

“The summons issued to Lofti Haji worryingly coincides with the official announcement of the organization of the first national SJT Congress next month” said Aidan White, IFJ General Secretary. “This is a sign of mounting pressure and may signal official attempt to limit the right of Tunisian journalists to freedom of association and representation”.

Lofti Hajji was called in by the police yesterday but decided to visit the station this morning during the official opening hours of the administration.

“The organization of the SJT Congress is a real opportunity to discuss the major challenges of the profession and will represent a test for the authorities” said White. “We hope that the perspective of the World Summit of the Information Society in November will help the government to seize an opportunity to support a media reform agenda. This is not the time to be putting pressure on journalists”.

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The IFJ is representing over 500,000 journalists in more than 110 countries.