Sanef 'deeply disturbed' by arrest of Angela Quintal, Muthoki Mumo

Kenyan journalist Muthoki Mumo and CPJ Africa Program Coordinator Angela Quintal who were arrested in Dar es Salaam on November 7. /COURTESY

It is now abundantly clear to anyone who followed the latest developments that Tanzanian journalists work in a climate of fear of intimidation.

The Twitter accounts of two staff of Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) who were detained by Tanzanian authorities have been suspended, leading to confusion whether the former Nation reporter Muthoki Mumo and former Mail & Guardian editor Angela Quintal have been released.

"Further, the journalists' passports and phones need to be immediately returned".

He added that both women were now at the South African embassy in Tanzania's economic capital Dar-es-Salaam.

The pair, Angela Quintal - CPJ's Africa program coordinator, and Muthoki Mumo - its sub-Saharan Africa representative were detained in their hotel rooms in Dar es Salaam, Quintal said.

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Former Mail & Guardian editor Angela Quintal is safe and is back at her hotel after being detained by Tanzanian authorities on Wednesday night, the Department of International Relations has confirmed. The officials searched the pair's belongings and would not return their passports when asked, according to Quintal. "They have been taken to an unknown location", read the tweet.

Quintal sent a message Wednesday from her verified Twitter account saying she and her colleague were "being taken for interrogation by Tanzanian authorities and we don't know why?"

Other freedoms are also under pressure, with a powerful Dar-es-Salaam official last week announcing an anti-gay witch-hunt to track down people suspected of engaging in homosexuality, which is illegal in Tanzania under British colonial-era laws.

The two were on a reporting mission missing in the country.

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