Mauritania frees blogger accused of "apostasy" News -

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Mauritanian authorities have released a blogger who has attracted international attention after being charged with apostasy for Islam, his lawyer said Tuesday (30 July 2019).

"He was released yesterday from his house under house arrest … but he is not completely free in his movements," his lawyer Fatimata Mbayi told AFP. She added that Amkhitir "is no longer in Nouakchott," the capital of the country, without giving details.

Blogger Mohamed El-Sheikh Ould Amkhaitir, 36, was initially sentenced to death and the sentence commuted to prison. He remained in detention despite the end of his prison term, which sparked protests by human rights organizations.

However, the website "Sahara Media" Mauritanian, according to what he described as "special sources" that Ould Amkhitir left on Monday night Mauritanian territory heading for a European country was not named. The source added that the blogger left Mauritanian territory through a border crossing into Senegalese territory under the protection of Mauritanian security forces.

His release comes in the last days of Mauritanian President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, who previously said the blogger's detention was "to ensure the security and security of the country."

Blogger Mohammed Al-Sheikh Ould Amkhaitir was arrested in January 2014 for an article considered to be a heresy against the Prophet of Islam and a rebuke of religion. After his declaration of repentance, an appeals court ordered on 17 November to commute the sentence to two years' imprisonment, which sparked protests in the conservative country.

AH / AFP (AFP)

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