SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural Freedom - Samir Kassir Foundation

Lebanese journalist Radwan Mortada sentenced to 13 months in prison

Monday , 29 November 2021

On November 26, 2021, the Permanent Military Court in Beirut sentenced Radwan Mortada, a reporter for the local daily Al-Akhbar and the news website The Cradle, to thirteen months imprisonment for allegedly insulting the military, according to news reportsreports by Mortada’s employers, and the Beirut-based press freedom group SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural Freedom.


The journalist was not present at the court hearing and has not been detained, according to those sources.

 

The charges stem from a January 9 interview Mortada gave to the local broadcaster Al-Jadeed, in which he criticized Lebanese authorities’ handling of the Beirut port explosion and criticized the army for failing to prevent it.


In an interview on Al-Jadeed on November 26, Mortada said that he had not been notified of the date of the trial, and that he objected to being tried before a military court. He said he would appeal the sentence and request that the case be transferred to the Publications Court.

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