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Petition for the release of two French journalists held in Indonesia

As French journalists Valentine Bourrat and Thomas Dandois begin their third month in detention in Indonesia, their support committee in France and Reporters Without Borders are launching a petition for their immediate release.

The petition, which notes that “fundamental freedoms, including the freedom to inform, concern the immense majority,” has already been signed by leading journalists such as Édith Bouvier, Claire Chazal, Laurent Delahousse, Guy Lagache, Jean-Pierre Pernaut, Patrick Poivre d’Arvor, David Pujadas, Harry Roselmack and Melissa Theuriaux.

It has also been signed by such well-known public figures as Laurent Baffie, Charles Berling, Jane Birkin, Cali, Michel Cymes, Jamel Debbouze, Benoît Hamon, Baptiste Lecaplain, Noël Mamère, André Manoukian and Bruno Solo.

Detained in Jayapura, the capital of the eastern province of Papua (on the island of New Guinea), Bourrat and Dandois were arrested while preparing a report for the Franco-German TV station Arte. They are accused of violating immigration regulations and are facing the possibility of a long trial and a sentence of up to five years in prison.

“Bourrat and Dandois did not apply for press visas because such visas are rarely granted and would have resulted in restrictions on their ability to work freely,” said Reporters Without Borders secretary-general Christophe Deloire. “The aim of this petition is to make the Indonesian authorities realize that it is absolutely unacceptable for them to continue detaining these journalists with the aim of deterring media coverage of Papua.”

Date posted: October 8, 2014 Last modified: May 23, 2018 Total views: 7