NUSOJ welcomes the UN report urging Somalia to ensure freedom of expression

NUSOJ.ORG.SO: National Union of Somali Journalists NUSOJ welcomes the joint report by the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) focusing on the right to freedom of opinion and expression in Somalia in the context of the country’s democratic transition.

For Immediate Press Release 03/09/2016 NUSOJ welcomes the UN report urging Somalia to ensure freedom of expression National Union of Somali Journalists NUSOJ welcomes the joint report by the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) focusing on the right to freedom of opinion and expression in Somalia in the context of the country’s democratic transition.

“The trend of arrest and detention of journalists and other media workers seems to indicate an intention to intimidate or harass journalists and media owners which inevitably leads to self-censorship or to media workers eventually leaving the profession,” says the report produced jointly by the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)

The Somali federal government and regional authorities use various abusive tactics in an attempt to silence the independent media. Such tactics include arbitrary arrests and forced closures of media outlets, threats and constant intimidation, Therefore, NUSOJ urges the Somali government and Federal states to take the report very seriously and implement its key recommendations such as strengthening law and policy frameworks, fostering a conducive environment for all Somalis to express their opinions freely, particularly at such a critical juncture in Somalia’s political landscape, and ensure accountability for human rights violations and abuses.

Al-shabaab remains the most dangerous group against Somali journalists and freedom of expression in Somalia.

“Somali journalists have been very concerned about the attempts to limit the freedom of expression and reporting on the process fairly during Somalia’s upcoming elections. Therefore, we call on the leaders of the government, heads of regional states and presidential candidates to respect and guarantee freedom of expression, freedom of media and build acceptable environment where both local and international media can thrive by working effectively and with objectivity during elections,” said Mohamed Ibrahim Moalimuu, the elected Secretary General of National Union of Somali Journalists.

The UN report said that the dangers facing media workers and public figures are illustrated by the killing, between August 2012 and June 2016, of a total of 30 journalists and 18 parliamentarians in Somalia, The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ), documented the arrests of16 journalists in various parts of Somalia during the past five months alone and this indicates how Somali journalists are vulnerable to the continuous harassment the authorities. Added Mohamed Moalimu.

Finally, NUSOJ condemns the false claim of Omar Faruk Osman, the former Secretary General of NUSOJ as the legitimate SG and bombards emails and press releases to international partners despite Somali journalists electing new leadership democratically and have been endorsed by the Somali Supreme Court, accredited by Somali government and welcomed by Somali Civil Society.

“Omar Faruk does not operate in Somalia as his illegitimate claim is well-known all over the country, because he is illegal and he should be ashamed of keeping the claim of being NUSOJ- SG while being outside the country. We repeat our call for him to abandon his false claim of NUSOJ Secretary General.” said Mahir Jama Aden NUSOJ President.

General Secretary of National Union of Somali Journalists
Mohamed Ibrahim Moalimuu
Nusoj@nusoj.org.so
Moalimuu@nusoj.org.so
moalimuu@gmail.com
+252615540001

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