Senior Philippine journalist arrested amid fears of crackdown on press freedom

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Butch Olano, from Amnesty International Philippines, condemned Ms Ressa’s arrest on a “trumped-up” libel charge.

“This is brazenly politically motivated, and consistent with the authorities’ threats and repeated targeting of Ressa and her team. Authorities should end this harassment, drop the charges, and repeal this repressive law,” he said.   

“In a country where justice takes years to obtain, we see the charges against her being railroaded – and the law being used to relentlessly intimidate and harass journalists for doing their jobs as truth-tellers.”

The government, however, maintains that her arrest was not linked to issues of press freedom. Salvador Panelo, the presidential spokesman, claimed in a television interview that her story had been “clearly defamatory.”  

 



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