20/03/07 (B387-A) BBC : Sentence contre un Défenseur des Droits de l’Homme à Djibouti. La FIDH dénonce les conditions du procès et demande la relaxe immédiate. Human rights sentence in Djibouti (Info lectrice en Anglais)

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
was unfair.

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.