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UA 236/94 - Tunisia: possible prisoner of conscience / fear of unfair trial: Najib Hosni

, رقم الوثيقة: MDE 30/018/1994

Najib Hosni, a human rights lawyer from El Kef, was arrested on 15 June and is currently detained in El Kef Prison. He is apparently accused of falsifying a contract, but there are fears he may be a prisoner of conscience, held because of his work in defending prisoners of conscience and other political prisoners. Over the past year he has been subjected to continuous harassment by the authorities.

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: MDE 30/18/94
Distr: UA/SC
UA 236/94 Possible prisoner of conscience / Fear of unfair trial17 June 1994
TUNISIA Najib HOSNI, lawyer and human rights activist
Najib Hosni, a human rights lawyer from El Kef, was arrested on 15 June and
is currently detained in El Kef Prison. He is apparently accused of falsifying
a contract, but Amnesty International fears that he may be a prisoner of
conscience, held because of his work in defending prisoners of conscience and
other political prisoners. It also fears that he faces an unfair trial
Najib Hosni has over the past years been very active in the defence of prisoners
of conscience accused of insulting the authorities, or of political activities
on behalf of unauthorized political left-wing and Islamist opposition
movements. He has also been active defending other civil liberties cases,
such as individuals deprived of their passports on account of their, or their
relatives' opinions or political activities. He is one of the defence lawyers
for Moncef Marzouki, the former President of the Tunisian League for Human
Rights detained as a prisoner of conscience since March 1994 (see UA 127/94,
MDE 30/11/94, 30 March 1994 and follow-up).
Over the past year, Najib Hosni has been subjected to continuous harassment
by the Tunisian authorities; following visits by international human rights
observers, his office and house were put under police surveillance, his clients
and staff were questioned by police, and his wife and children have been unable
to obtain passports.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
1994 has seen the human rights situation further deteriorate in Tunisia.
Prisoners of conscience have been detained and imprisoned, and some were
tortured during incommunicado detention. Women who recently signed a petition
calling for the respect of freedom of expression have been interrogated and
harassed, foreign journalists and observers have been expelled from Tunisia
or denied access to the country, and some foreign newspapers have been banned
since last April.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and airmail
letters either in French/Arabic/English or in your own language:
- expressing concern at the detention of Najib Hosni, who may be detained as
a prisoner of conscience;
- urging the Tunisian authorities to provide clarification concerning his legal
status and reasons for his detention;
- calling for his immediate and unconditional release if he has been detained
solely on account of his work as a lawyer and human rights activist.
APPEALS TO:
Salutation for all: Excellence / Your Excellency
1) Minister of Justice
M. Sadok Chaâbane
Ministre de la Justice
Ministère de la Justice
Boulevard Bab Benat
2
Tunis, Tunisie
Faxes: +216 1 568 106 or +216 1 567 070
Telexes: 13000 maet tn (via Ministère de l'Intérieur)
Telegrams: Ministre de la Justice Chaâbane, Tunis, Tunisie
2) Minister of the Interior
M. Abdallah Kallal
Ministre de l'Intérieur
Ministère de l'Intérieur
Av Habib Bourguiba
Tunis, Tunisie
faxes: +216 1 340888 or +216 1 348 365
telex: 13662 sdap tn
3) Minister of Foreign Affairs
M. Habib Ben Yahia
Ministre des Affaires étrangères
Ministère des Affaires étrangères
Place du Gouvernement
La Kasbah
Tunis, Tunisie
Faxes: +216 1 791005
Telexes: 14470 mafta tn, 14471 mafta tn, 14472 mafta tn
Telegrams: Ministre des Affaires étrangères Ben Yahia, Tunis, Tunisie
COPIES OF YOUR APPEALS TO:
Ligue Tunisienne pour les Droits de l'Homme
21 Rue Imam al Bakri
TUNIS, Tunisie
M. Iadh Ouederni
Conseiller présidentiel pour les Droits de l'Homme
Attaché à la Présidence de la République
Palais Présidentiel
Tunis/Carthage, Tunisie
faxes: +216 1 742 513 or +216 1 731 009
and to diplomatic representatives of TUNISIA accredited to your country.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 29 July 1994.

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