Algerian journalist Ihsane El Kadi gets 5-year sentence


Algerian journalist Ihsane El Kadi, who owns an independent media group critical of the government, has been sentenced to three years in prison by the Sidi M’Hamed court in Algiers. The court accused him of “foreign financing of his business”. El Kadi was given a sentence of five years, three of which he must serve in jail. In addition, the court ruled that Interface Media, which operates Maghreb Emergent and Radio M, should be dissolved. The court levied a number of fines on the company and on El Kadi himself totalling 11.7 million Algerian dinars ($86,200). El Kadi’s defence team had dismissed the foreign funding charges, pointing out that the only foreign transfer to El Kadi’s company had been from his daughter who lives in the United Kingdom and who had transferred £25,000 ($31,000) to the company, in which she is a partner. El Kadi’s arrest has been condemned by human rights organisations like Amnesty International and journalists’ rights groups from Reporters Without Borders to the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ).