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Journalist Refugee Arrested in Manus

The International Federation of Journalists, an international body aimed at protecting journalist rights, has condemned the arrest of an Iranian-Kurdish journalist, who is a refugee on Manus island.

IFJ said Behrouz Boochani, was arrested during a raid with reports that officers were specifically looking for him.

He was led away in handcuffs by two police officers.

In the media statement, the arrest of Behrouz Boochani, was because of his work as a journalist,was a blatant and attack of press freedom and an attempt to silence a critical voice.

Behrouz Boochani has been in the detention centre on Manus Island since August 2013.

IFJ said that Boochani has been a main source of factual information about the conditions inside the Manus Island detention centre, with his reports being published in Australia and Internationally.

On Boochani’s twitter account, he gives regular updates on the situation at the Decommissioned Manus detention centre and what is happening to asylum seekers who are refusing to move.

On the 22nd of this month he tweeted that he had been released, and that he was handcuffed for more than 2 hours in a place behind the detention centre, and that the police who arrested him yelled at him saying “you are reporting against us”.

The IFJ in the media release said that Journalists should never be stopped from doing their work.

Earlier this year, he was shortlisted in the journalism category for the 2017 Index on Censorship’s Freedom of Expression Awards and just three weeks ago he was awarded the Amnesty International Australia Media Award for his journalism from Manus Island.

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