Detained Syrian-American Woman Blogger Faces Possible Jail Sentence


Reporters Without Borders said Tuesday it is very concerned about the fate of the Syrian-American blogger Razan Ghazzawi, who was brought before a court today following her arrest December 4, as she was about to cross the border into Jordan.

Her lawyer said she was facing between three and 15 years in prison on a total of three charges. One was “establishing an organization that aims to change the social and economic entity of the state.” Another was “circulating false news that could weaken national sentiment and ignite sectarian strife.” It relates to her alleged membership of a committee that organizes pro-democracy demonstrations.

The third was violating article 335 of the criminal code, which bans “participation in a riotous demonstration.” When arrested at the border, she was on her way to attend a forum in Amman on the defence of media freedom.

Reporters Without Borders calls on the authorities to release her unconditionally and drop all the charges against her. The regime must also end its severe harassment of bloggers and journalists. Some of those who were arrested have since been released, but many continue to be held on serious charges.

A Facebook group and an online petition have been launched in support of Ghazzawi. Internet users can also express their solidarity with her by using the #FreeRazan hashtag on Twitter.

Reporters Without Borders

Reporters Without Borders defends journalists and media assistants imprisoned or persecuted for doing their job and exposes the mistreatment and torture of them in many countries.

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