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SBC broadcasting network director arrested by Puntland regional police

(NUSOJ/IFEX) - NUSOJ strongly condemns today's arrest of Director of Somali Broadcasting Corporation (SBC) Mowlid Haji Abdi by the police of Puntland Regional State in northeastern Somalia.

Around 9:50 a.m. (local time), Puntland police forcibly entered the headquarters of the SBC, the largest radio and television network in Puntland, and ordered Mowlid Haji Abdi to go with them. The police took the director to a detention center at the Bossasso seaport, where they are currently detaining him.

"We deplore the arrest of Mowlid Haji Abdi as a deliberate aggression against media freedom," said Omar Faruk Osman, NUSOJ Secretary General.

Puntland authorities did not discuss the motive for the journalist's arrest, but journalists and members of SBC Radio and Television stated that it was over the SBC's coverage of recent armed conflict in Puntland.

"We demand the unconditional and immediate release of our colleague from Puntland authorities," said Faruk. "Puntland police have recently been using all forms of harassment and intimidation of journalists so that media can not report current events accurately and independently."

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