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UAE jails journalist for damaging its reputation

Jordanian journalist Tayseer Al-Najjar [ICFUAE]
Jordanian journalist Tayseer Al-Najjar [ICFUAE]

Jordanian journalist Tayseer Al-Najjar has been sentenced to three years in prison followed by deportation for damaging the reputation of the state, a court in the UAE ruled yesterday.

Al-Najjar was charged with damaging the reputation of the state by publishing comments on social media that criticised the UAE's foreign policy and other Gulf countries and fined 500,000 dirhams ($136,129). The Federal Appeal Court in Abu Dhabi also ordered the confiscation of his electronical devices and the closure of his social media accounts "for insulting the state's symbols".

First held on 3 December 2015 while on his way to Jordan, Al-Najjar was forcibly disappeared after reporting to the Security Department on 13 December and was held in a secret location until 18 February 2016 when he was allowed his first call home.

Although he appeared at his first hearing on 18 January 2016, he was denied access to a lawyer and was held in arbitrary detention for more than a year.

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JordanMiddle EastNewsUAE
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