Anas Guennoun

Anas Guennoun was the first journalist to be arrested in Morocco on charges of defamation since King Mohammed VI announced the pardoning of seven journalists (including editor Ali Lmrabet) on 7 January 2004.

Editor of the weekly Al Ahali, he was given a 10-month prison sentence for libelling a politician and imprisoned in Tangiers on 2 April 2004. He had written an article in 1999 about the private life of the governor of Tangiers.

According to reports received by English PEN, Anas Guennoun was released from prison during the first week of August 2004.

On 2 April 2004 Guennoun had received a ten-month prison sentence for “defamation”. The sentence appeared to stem from an article written by the journalist which allegedly defamed a politician.

Since his release from prison, Guennoun has been sentenced to an eight-month prison sentence in relation to a separate charge of “defamation” and following the sentencing his immediate arrest was ordered by the court.

The prison sentence apparently expired a year after being handed down and it has been reported that Guennoun has gone into hiding in order to avoid serving it.

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