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Reporters Abdallahi Ould Tfagha Moctar and Mohamed Lemine Ould Moustapha briefly detained

(MFWA/IFEX) - On 11 March 2009, Abdallahi Ould Tfagha Moctar and Mohamed Lemine Ould Moustapha, reporters for Sahara Media, a Nouakchott-based independent newswire service, were arrested by Mauritania National Security personnel, allegedly for filming the entrance to the Nouakchott civil prison.

An MFWA correspondent reported that the two reporters were detained for several hours in the civil prison and later transferred to police headquarters. The correspondent said that although the police could not find footage of the prison on the journalists' cameras, the two were forced to make statements to the effect that they had filmed the prison.

The two Sahara media reporters were at the prison to report on the possible release of jailed leaders of the National Front for the Defence of Democracy (NFDD), a coalition group that opposed the 2008 military takeover in Mauritania. Some of the leaders of the NFDD had been in detention for three months on allegations of having embezzled public funds.

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