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Somaliland Supreme Court Intervenes In Haatuf Court Case
Hargeysa, Somaliland, February 17, 2007 (SL Times) - The Somaliland Supreme Court issued a court injunction last Wednesday against the Hargeysa Regional Court from continuing Haatuf journalist's trial proceedings until the Supreme Court reaches a verdict on the appeal submitted by the defense lawyers of the Haatuf journalists.
Haatuf journalists, Yusuf Gabobe, Ali Dini and Muhammad Omar are at present being detained in Mandera prison, Sahil Region, and have been in police custody since January 2, 20007. The defense lawyer of the journalists filed an appeal to the Supreme Court against the Hargeysa Regional Court's use of the 1962 Penal Code of Somalia instead of the Somaliland Press Law in the court trial of Haatuf journalists.
Haatuf journalists were indicted last month by the state prosecutor of Somaliland on charges of having insulted and defamed the president of Somaliland Dahir Rayale and his family, when Haatuf Daily printed articles relating to corrupt practices of the president's family in a series of articles and feature stories dating back to Nov 2006 and Jan 2007.
The Supreme Court adjourned the next Haatuf appeal hearing to 20 Feb 2007.
Source: Somaliland Times
Past news items relating to this story in Somaliland Times:
Paris, February 7, 2007 – Reporters Without Borders today reiterated its appeal to the authorities in the northern breakaway state of Somaliland to release three newspaper journalists who have been held for several weeks and have just been moved from the Somaliland capital of Hargeisa to a provincial prison.
Hargeysa, Somaliland, February 3, 2007 (SL Times) – SNM veterans called on the government to release the detained Haatuf journalists on Thursday.
Hargeysa, Somaliland, February 3, 2007 (SL Times) – Two ex-combatants who fought for the Somali National Movement's liberation struggle against Somalia's late dictator Siyad Barre in the 1980s, were arrested in Hargeysa by the Somaliland police.
London, February 2, 2007 – Three journalists employed by Somaliland's independent Haatuf Media Network have been arrested and charged as a result of their work. Amnesty International considers them to be prisoners of conscience, detained solely for exercising their right to peaceful freedom of expression.
Hargeysa, Somaliland, January 27, 2007 (SL Times) – Prominent traditional leaders of the Sa’ad Musse clan have condemned what they call attempts by Somaliland president Rayale to involve the clan system in the case of detained Haatuf newspaper journalists.
Hargeysa, Somaliland, 27 January 2007 (SL Times) - Haatuf Newspaper’s series of articles alleging corruption by President Dahir Rayale and his wife Huda Barkhad were published in 17 different editions starting from November 24, 2006. The last piece appeared on January 2, 2007, and in the same day Haatuf publisher Yusuf A. Gabobe and editor Ali Abdi Dini were arrested in connection with these articles.
Hargeysa, Somaliland, January 27, 2007 (SL Times) – Lawyers defending Haatuf journalists who have been held in detention since early this month by Somaliland’s CID said, the Chief of CID Suleiman Muse Hassan has denied visitation to their clients.
The raid of Haatuf newspaper premises
The Republic of Somaliland has a free and thriving press, but this is often marred by the occasional detention of journalists 1 on the orders of the government or its regional representatives.
Hargeysa, Somaliland, January 20, 2007 (SL Times) – The Somaliland’s House of the Representative’s select committee on Judicial affairs on Thursday held a hearing in which the chairman of the Supreme Court, Mohamed Hirsi Omane was questioned with regard to a Hargeysa Regional Court ruling that allowed 3 detained Journalists from the Haatuf Newspaper to be prosecuted under the penal code of Somalia instead of the country’s press law
Paris, 18 January 2007
Dear Mr. President,
Justice has played very little role in what has happened with the newspaper Haatuf. Ever since the arrest of Yusuf Abdi Gabobe and Ali Abdi Dini, the entire case has been marked by unfairness, procedural irregularities, personal revenge and the denial of democratic principles.
Hargeysa, Somaliland, January 20, 2007 (SL Times) – A group of journalists led by the Secretary General of Somaliland's Society for Independent Journalists and Writers visited five youth who were sentenced to six months imprisonment by the regional Hargeysa Security Committee last week for taking part in the Hargeysa demonstration, which happened on Jan. 8, 2007.
The New York based CPJ
New York, January 18, 2007—The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns the ruling by a court in the northern breakaway republic of Somaliland on Wednesday to try three jailed journalists under archaic criminal laws in connection with a story critical of the president.
Hargeysa, Somaliland, January 13, 2007 (SL Times) – Haatuf Media Network (HMN) chairman/editor of Somaliland Times Yusuf Abdi Gabobe and the editor of the Somali language Haatuf newspaper, Ali Abdi Dini appeared for their first Hargeysa Regional Court hearing last Thursday.
Hargeysa, Somaliland, January 13, 2007 (SL Times) – Mr. Kayse Ahmed Osman, a close friend of the detained Haatuf Media network journalists, Yusuf Abdi Gabobe and Ali Abdi Dini was arrested while visiting the detained journalists inside the CID Hargeysa compound on Friday, 12/01/07.
Hargeysa, Somaliland. Jan 6, 2007, (SL Times) – Forty heavily armed police and C.I.D officers stormed the offices of Haatuf Media Network (HMN) on Tuesday afternoon and arrested the chairman of HMN, Mr Yusuf Abdi Gabobe who is also the editor of Somaliland Times and the editor of the Somali language Haatuf daily newspaper, Mr Ali Abdi Dini and the chief accountant for HMN, Mr. Hussein Khalif Abdullahi who sustained minor injuries while being arrested. Mr. Hussien Khalif was released 3 hours later.
New York, January 3, 2007-Police in the northern self-declared republic of Somaliland stormed the offices of the Somali-language daily Haatuf late Tuesday and seized two journalists over an article alleging corruption by the president’s wife, according to local media reports and local journalists. Managing editor Yusuf Abdi Gabobe and editor Ali Abdi Dini have been held for questioning at the offices of the Criminal Investigation Department in Hargeysa
Paris January 4, 2007, -Reporters Without Borders has condemned the arrests of journalists in recent days in the northern breakaway state of Somaliland.