Reporters Without Borders is very worried by the fact that the Lebanese journalist Rami Aysha to be tried by court martial in Beirut tomorrow on a charge of “purchasing firearms,” which carries a possible three-year jail term.
Employed by such international news media as Time Magazine, Spiegel Online and Global Post, Aysha was arrested in a southern part of the capital on 30 August 2012, while researching for a story on arms trafficking, and was released on bail of 1 million Lebanese pounds (515 euros) on 27 September.
Read the account of his arrest and detention that he gave to Reporters Without Borders after his release.
“Aysha is a journalist, not a dealer or purchaser of firearms,” Reporters Without Borders secretary-general Christophe Deloire said. “We call not only for this military court to declare itself incompetent to try him but also for the withdrawal of all the charges".
“Instead, the Lebanese authorities should account for his arbitrary arrest, his detention in a secret location, and the mistreatment he received while in detention. The abusive behaviour of the police, the police intelligence service and the military police must be investigated and those responsible must be punished.”