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Journalist Pap Saine re-arrested by police on charges of "false publication and broadcasting"

(MFWA/IFEX) - On 9 February 2009, Gambian Police Force officers rearrested Pap Saine, managing editor of the Banjul-based "The Point" newspaper, subjected him to several hours of interrogation and charged him with another offence of "false publication and broadcasting" at the serious crime unit.

MFWA sources reported that Malang Ceesay, assistant superintendent of police, questioned Saine over the authenticity of an article he wrote in his newspaper headlined: "Neneh Macdouall Gaye is Gambia's ambassador to the US, as three diplomats are recalled." The article appeared in the 30 January issue of the newspaper.

After hours of interrogation, Saine was also questioned about his Gambian citizenship. As proof of his Gambian nationality, he reportedly produced his birth certificate, passport and national identification card.

Not satisfied with the information, Ceesay then asked the managing editor to produce his deceased father's identity papers, which the police examined critically before releasing him. The police warned Saine that he would be contacted if the need arose.

This is the second time in less than two weeks that Pap Saine has been arrested and interrogated by the police. On 2 February, he was arrested, detained and questioned by Gambia Police Force officers for allegedly "publishing false information". He was granted bail in the sum of 50, 000 Gambian Dalasis (approx. US$2,000).

Saine made his first appearance at the Kanifing magistrate's court on 4 February. He is to reappear on 19 February.

Updates the Saine case:

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