SOMALILAND: SOLJA Urges Government to Seek Release of Somaliland Journalist Detained In Ethiopia

The chairman of Somaliland Journalist Association (SOLJA), Mohamoud Abdi Jama (Huuto)
The chairman of Somaliland Journalist Association (SOLJA), Mohamoud Abdi Jama (Huuto)

Somaliland Journalist Association (SOLJA), the only independent, nonprofit organization that promotes press freedom in Somaliland has expressed its concern over the situation of Somaliland Journalist detained in Ethiopia for nearly two months in a statement released yesterday.

“Somaliland Journalist Association (SOLJA) expresses it’s serious concern for the well-being of Somaliland journalist Yusuf Mohamed Hassan detained in Ethiopia for nearly two months,” said SOLJA president Mohamoud Abdi Jama (Huuto), according to the organization’s statement.

Yusuf Mohamed Hassan, Somaliland Journalist and the chief editor of the leading English news site, Somaliland Sun was detained, along with a foreign national, by Ethiopian authorities on December 24, 2014.

“According to reports received by SOLJA through indirect sources have indicated that Yusuf Mohamed Hassan will appear in a court in Ethiopian Capital Addis Ababa, along with foreign national whose nationality can’t by verified by SOLJA,” the statement added.

The statement also said that the organization made contacts with Somaliland government and Ethiopian Consulate in Hargeisa calling Somaliland and Ethiopian authorities to share information about the circumstances of his detention.

“SOLJA have made contacts with Somaliland government and Ethiopian consulate in Hargeisa though still there are no tangible steps taken by Somaliland government regarding the plight of the detained journalist. SOLJA also calls for Somaliland and Ethiopian authorities to share information about the circumstances of his detention and seek for his immediate release,” the statement said

Similarly, SOLJA lauded the government’s efforts regarding the detention and the release of two journalists, Mohamed Abdilahi detained in Berbera and Barkhadle Mohamoud Gedi detained in Sanag region.

“The organization appointed two committees who will work for the defense and the protection of journalist ethics,” the statement concluded.

Meanwhile, prior his arrest on December 24, 2014 the last known location of Yusuf Mohamed Hassan was Jigjiga, the capital of the Zone five Somalia administrative region of Ethiopia where he posted his last piece titled “Jigjiga the Ethiopian town where Bajaj is King Transporter”. Since then not a word has been heard from him.

By Abdirisak Itaqile

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