Update: Journalist Ibraimo Abu Mbaruco has been missing for over one month while the government has not officially commented on the case
The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) joins its affiliate the Mozambique Union of Journalists in calling for the immediate and unconditional release of journalist Ibraimo Abu Mabaruco.
On Tuesday 7 April, journalist Ibraimo was arrested by soldiers after leaving his office by about 6:00pm. According to the Media Institute of Southern Africa MISA Mozambique Ibraimo informed his colleagues about his supposed arrest by the armed forces through a text message in which he wrote “I was surrounded with soldiers." MISA also stated that a police officer assigned to the district police command in Palma told them that “it was the Armed Forces of Mozambique that took the journalist," confiding in them that "he knew that the journalist was taken from Palma to Mueda where the armed forces have the interrogation room.”
The MISA report further stated that Ibraimo’s work was centered on “collecting, processing and publishing information related to population resettlement processes and their impact on Palma."
IFJ General Secretary, Anthony Bellanger, denounced the arrest and incommunicado detention as arbitrary and illegal which was tantamount to forceful disappearance.
“The journalist posed no threat to the military or the security forces but was doing his job in the public interest. Many journalists have been harassed, intimidated, arrested and detained in the troubled northern province of Cabo Delgado. The Government of Mozambique must immediately put an end to these illegal arrests of journalists by the military. The authorities must guarantee the safety and security of journalists in the country and release our colleague immediately."