Tunisian journalist granted bail in ‘terrorism’ case

(Photo: Envato Elements)

TUNIS — A Tunisian journalist and activist was released on bail Sunday, five days after his arrest on suspicion of “terrorism”, his website said.اضافة اعلان

Ghassen Ben Khlifa, editor of the website Inhiyez and a prominent pro-Palestinian activist, was arrested at his home on Tuesday.

The case against him is the latest in what civil society groups describe as a growing threat to freedom of the press in Tunisia under President Kais Saied.

Police officers also searched Ben Khlifa’s house and seized two computers, according to multiple media reports.

His lawyer, quoted by local media, said Ben Khlifa was suspected of running a Facebook page that “incites terrorism”.

The judiciary has agreed to release Ben Khlifa on bail for the duration of the investigation, according to Inhiyez.

Dozens of activists and journalists demonstrated in central Tunis on Friday to demand his release.

The North African country has seen a spike in prosecutions of journalists, including in military courts, since Saied seized wide-ranging powers last year.

Civil society groups have warned of a return to the methods used by security services under autocrat Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, who was overthrown in the 2011 revolt that sparked the Arab Spring uprisings.

In a report released in early May, the SNJT journalists’ union warned against “serious threats” to press freedom in the country.

On August 17, a military court sentenced an anti-Saied journalist to three months in prison for public remarks he made about the president and the armed forces.

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