Algeria jails reporter for article on date exports

Wrote in Echorouk on halt to shipping, use of banned pesticide

09 September, 15:08

    Date harvest in Algeria Date harvest in Algeria

    ALGIERS - The Algerian authorities have detained a journalist from the Echorouk daily after the publication of an article on an alleged halt to date exports from the country, ANSA was told by a source from the family of the journalist.

    The journalist, Belkacem Haouam, was questioned on Thursday by the Hussein Dey court in Algiers - the source stated - and was taken into custody.

    The source noted that Haouam had published an article on Wednesday in Echorouk in which he reported "an immediate halt to Algerian date exports after the discovery of a banned pesticide in exports heading for France".

    The Algerian trade ministry later denied in a statement the claims made in the article, saying that they had been based on "baseless and unjustified information damaging to the national economy".

    The statement went on to say that it had "decided to adopt all necessary measures against the author of the article and the daily, including legal actions".

    Echorouk, the newspaper with the highest readership in Algeria, has removed the article from its website and no copies of the paper were found at newsstands on Thursday.

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