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Opposition party chairman withdraws complaint against journalists

(MFWA/IFEX) - On 4 June 2007, chairman of the opposition Popular Front political party, Ch'bih Ould Cheikh Malainnie, withdrew complaints of defamation he filed against three journalists from privately-owned Nouakchott-based newspapers.

The journalists, managing editor of the daily newspaper "L'Authentique", Oumar Moctar, managing editor of the daily "Al Vejr", Tah Ould Ahmed, and managing editor of the daily "Al Alem", Mohamed Mahmoud Ould Bakar, were on 28 May interrogated by police for about one and a half hours, following a complaint against them made by Malainnie.

In several articles, the newspapers had linked the party's chairman to a recent cocaine scandal that hit the country in early May.

Another journalist, Abdel Fettah Ould Ebeydna, managing editor of "Al-Aqsa", a daily Arabic language newspaper, was accused of defamation by a businessman and was subsequently arrested and imprisoned for four days before being granted bail pending further investigations into the matter.

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