30 July 2003

Alert

Appeal for release of journalists' guides, one guide manages to escape


Incident details

Thao Moua, Pa Phue Khan, Tha Char Yang

media worker(s)

detained

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(RSF/IFEX) - On 24 July 2003, journalists Thierry Falise and Vincent Reynaud appealed to Laotian authorities to release Thao Moua and Pa Phue Khan. On 30 June, the two detainees received prison sentences of 12 and 15 years, respectively, for working as guides for the two journalists while they were preparing a documentary in Laos. They are currently imprisoned in Vientiane. A third guide, Tha Char Yang, who managed to escape, was sentenced to 20 years in absentia. Other Laotians are believed to have been arrested in connection with the case, but their names are not known.

Falise and Reynaud maintain that it is unfair to keep the two Laotians of Hmong origin in prison when all they did was work for foreign journalists to try to make the world aware of the humanitarian tragedy of members of the Hmong ethnic group.

The two journalists are concerned about the conditions in which their two Laotian guides are being held. Amnesty International has reported that they have been mistreated by police.



Source

Reporters Without Borders
47, rue Vivienne
75002 Paris, France
rsf (@) rsf.org


Fax:+33 1 45 23 11 51
Laos
 
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