Algeria journalist charged with foreign 'intel' links: watchdog

2017-11-13 21:23


Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Algiers - An Algerian freelance journalist and fixer has been indicted on accusations of intelligence contacts with a foreign power, press freedom watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RSF) said on Monday.

Said Chitour, who has worked for the BBC and the Washington Post among others, faces up to life in prison if he is convicted for allegedly passing confidential documents to foreign diplomats.

A court in the Algiers district of Bir Mourad Rais agreed to a request by prosecutors that Chitour be tried, RSF said. "The case has been referred to a criminal court."

Intelligence services arrested Chitour at Algiers airport on June 5, RSF said.

In September, it said he had been held for 100 days without any charge being brought.

He is to be tried under a law that punishes anyone who collects information "likely to be harmful to national defence or the national economy" with the intention of passing it to a foreign power, defence lawyer Khaled Bourayou said.

RSF said it was "appalled" by the news of his indictment.

"As his lawyers say the prosecution still has absolutely no evidence against him, we condemn yesterday's decision and we continue to call for his release," it said.

It said he is diabetic, has lost 20 kilos since his arrest, and that "his family and colleagues are very worried about his health".

RSF, which ranks Algeria 134rd out of 180 countries on its press freedom index, charged in June that the North African country used "harassment" and "threats" to pressure journalists.

Read more on:    rsf  |  algeria  |  north africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.