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REPUBLIC OF CHAD:
CHADIAN PRISONER OF CONSCIENCE RELEASED

Update info:
10 Aug 2015 (Suspended)
Country:
REPUBLIC OF CHAD
Subject:
Djeralar Miankeol
Gender: m
Period:
10 Sep 2015
Distribution date:
10 Aug 2015
UA No:
138/2015

Djeralar Miankeol, Chadian land rights activist and Amnesty International prisoner of conscience, was released on 28 July. The Moundou Court of Appeal overturned an earlier High Court verdict that had found him guilty of insulting the judiciary and dropped all charges against him. 

The Moundou Court of Appeal, after re-examining all of the evidence presented and interviewing Djeralar Miankeol, handed down a not guilty verdict on 28 July. All charges against Djeralar Miankeol were dropped and he was released the same day. The President of the Court said, "Djeralar may go to his family and be taken care of. He is free. There is nothing to fear."

This decision comes after a wide mobilisation of Amnesty International members around the world and strong advocacy by Amnesty International’s West and Central Africa office as well as other partners. 

Djeralar Miankeol, land rights activist and Director of Association Ngaoubourandi (ASNGA), was arrested on 7 June by the Public Prosecutor of Moundou after questioning the competence of Chadian judicial officials in a radio interview on FM Liberte. The next day, he was charged with “insulting the judiciary” and was transferred to the prison of Moundou. On the 30 June, the trial against Djeralar began and on 7 July, he was sentenced to two years in prison and a fine of 100,000 CFA francs (around 170USD) by the High Court of Justice of Moundou. His lawyers then lodged an appeal on 7 July.

Djeralar Miankeol’s wife says, ‘Thank you very much to all of you for the release of my husband. The Court’s decision to release him and cancel all the charges against him is an act of justice in a sea of injustice. My deepest and sincere appreciation and gratitude for your efforts, actions taken and prayers as well as your daily commitments for the defence of the rights of the voiceless.’