The Gambia: Missionaries sentenced to hard labour

English PEN is concerned for the well-being of David and Fiona Fulton, two British missionaries who have been sentenced to one year in prison in The Gambia.

According to our information, the couple, who were arrested at their home on 29 November 2008, pleaded guilty to charges of sedition “with intent to bring hatred or contempt against the president or the government” on 24 December 2008, believing that this would lead to a more lenient sentence. On 30 December, they were sentenced to one year in prison with hard labour and each received a maximum fine of 250,000 dalasis (£6,250). The Foreign Office has called for the clarification of the term “hard labour”.

We at English PEN believe that David and Fiona Fulton are being held in violation of their right to free expression, and as such are calling for their release.

For more information on this case, please see Lee Glendinning’s article ‘British missionaries sentenced to hard labour in Gambia’:

For more information on human rights violations in The Gambia, please see Natasha Schmidt’s article ‘A Blip on the Radar’:


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