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Cote d'Ivoire court sets free pro-Gbagbo journalists

(Xinhua)

15:48, December 07, 2011

ABIDJAN, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) -- A court in Cote d'Ivoire has set free three journalists working for the "Notre Voie" newspaper, which supported ex-president Laurent Gbagbo facing war crime charges now in The Hague.

The pro-Gbagbo journalists were freed on Tuesday having been arrested on Nov. 24. They were identified as Cesar Etou, director of publication; Didier Dupry, head of editorial; and Boga Sivori, chief strategist.

They were detained for "publishing offensive comments against the West African country's current President Alassane Ouattara and using the media to incite people to steal."

However, a court in the economic capital Abidjan "found them not guilty of the charges that had been brought against them."

The United Nations Operation in Cote d'Ivoire (ONUCI) and several other organizations of journalists condemned the journalists' detention. The expressed welcome to the court's ruling on Tuesday.

ONUCI and the journalists' organization demand the judiciary and police respect the freedom of the press while requesting journalists to demonstrate professionalism in their work.

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