court in Djibouti has sentenced a human rights activist to serve six months
in jail for defaming a presidential guard.
Jean Paul Noel Abdi, who heads Djibouti League of Human Rights, was also fined
$360 for accusing the soldier of rape.
The court said Mr Abdi lacked evidence linking President Ismail Omar Guelleh’s
private guard to the incident.
The Paris-based International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH) said the conviction
FIDH spokesperson Florent Geel demanded the activist’s immediate release.
» We feel that these were trumped up charges against Mr Abdi because
he has been vocal against human rights violations in Djibouti,? Mr Geel told
the BBC’s Network Africa programme. »
Mr Abdi, who is also Amnesty International’s local representative, has 10
days to appeal against the sentence.