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News: Court orders police to investigate, bring evidence against UAE owned al-ain journalist

By Biruk Alemu @Birukalemu21

Addis Abeba: Judges at the Arada Division of the Federal Court of First Instance ordered police to complete the investigation within 7 days  on the case of Alazar Terefe, a journalist at the UAE owned Al-Ain, Amharic-based digital media, and adjourned the next hearing for 25 July, according to Meseret Yenehun, the journalist’s attorney who spoke with Addis Standard.

Lawyer Meseret said that journalist Alazar was arrested on 14 July, 2022 by the police of Lamberet area in Yeka sub city of Addis Ababa on suspicion of “posting articles inciting ethnic groups to fight each other and sending provocative message saying citizens are dying while saplings, which is intended to create discord between the people and the government.”

The day after Alazar was arrested by the police, on Friday, 15th of Julty, he was brought to the First Instance Court of Addis Ababa of Yeka Hearing Division and it was decided that he would be released from prison on a bail of 5,000 Birr. The investigating police appealed to the High Court and the court dismissed the appeal as inadmissible, but the lawyer explained to Addis Standard, that even though they went to the Lambert area police, they were unable to figure what went wrong with the police and said they found out the police was not willing to release him.

On Monday, July 18, the journalist appeared before the Arada Division of the Federal Court of First Instance where the Addis Ababa Police Commission explained to the court he arrested the journalist on suspicion of “receiving financial support from Al-Ain media to cover reports that incite violence.”   

The court stated that it could not make a decision on the issue of bail due to the failure of the police to submit the investigation file against journalist Alazar. Though the court had set a date for yesterday, July 20, to look at the case and make a decision, it was unable following the need to substantiate the matter and it subsequently ordered the police to further investigate and to bring  evidence to confirm the legitimacy of the media where the journalist was working at within 7 days. It adjourned the hearing until July 25 of 2022. AS

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