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Date Posted: 12:49:11 02/05/04 Thu
Author: Gilbert Ahnee
Subject: Mauritian Journalist Beaten by Police

What follows is far from being familiar in Mauritius. Nevertheless, even if
it may be an isolated case, vigilance is required.

Yours

Gilbert Ahnee

Alert Message

While covering a youth rally cum musical concert in Anjalay Stadium, North of Port-Louis, on the 4th February 2003, Mauritian journalist Jacques
Achille, a Week-End/Scope TV magazine regular staffer who also collaborates, occasionally, to Le Mauricien daily and to Sunday weekly Week-End, was submitted to foul language by police officers when he tried to inquire about an incident between these officers and some youngsters. When he said that he was a journalist, the police officers further threatened him, saying that they could easily cook up a charge against him. Feeling that the policemen were very provocative and concluding, from their language, that they seemed
to have an axe to grind with journalists, Achille preferred to let go and he moved away. A few minutes later, without any further argument from Jacques Achille, the policemen took hold of him, telling him he was under arrest. As from then on, he was submitted to unwarranted violence and brutality, in the police vehicle and in the Piton Police Station where he was arbitrarily
detained until the lawyer sent in by his newspaper obtained his liberation.
After his liberation, Mr Achille was examined by a doctor and he has reported the case to the police.
This is indeed an isolated occurrence but it appears that a press campaign may be needed to obtain the dismissal of these black sheep within the
Mauritian police force.

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