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Journalist, his assistant transferred to Kinshasa jail following several months of secret detention

(JED/IFEX) - The following is an abridged translation of a 9 June 2008 JED press release:

On the evening of 6 June 2008, Nsimba Embete Ponte, editor of the privately-owned twice-weekly newspaper "L'interprète", and his assistant, Davin Ntondo Nzovuangu, were transferred from the National Intelligence Agency (ANR), on the bank of the Congo River, near the prime minister's office, to the court of Matete, in Kinshasa.

The two journalists were held incommunicado, for 90 and 68 days, respectively, during which they had no access to a lawyer, a doctor, or any visit from a family member. On 7 June, Nsimba, who appeared very weak, told JED he fainted twice while in detention.

The journalists were charged with "publishing false news, threatening state security and insulting the president", following a series of articles published on 29 February, about the health of President Joseph Kabila. Nsimba and Ntondo were transferred on 7 June to a Kinshasa jail (Centre pénitentiaire et de rééducation de Kinshasa, CPRK, the former Makala prison).

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