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RFI reporter faces Cameroon military court accused of helping Boko Haram

media Ahmed Abba, RFI Correspondent in Cameron RFI

A reporter for Radio France Internationale's Hausa service appeared in a military court on Monday accused of being an accomplice of the Boko Haram armed Islamist movement. The trial was adjourned until 28 March to allow judges to examine claims by Ahmed Abba's lawyers that he has been tortured and suffered other rights abuses.

Abba, who was arrested last July, faces charges of "complicity in terrorism and failing to denounce acts of terror", according to the charge sheet read in the court in Yaoundé.

Dossier: Sharia wars - Boko Haram v the military in northern Nigeria

He denies the charges and his lawyers want the trial scrapped, arguing that his detention is "arbitrary and illegal".

They also say that he was initially denied access to his family and lawyers and kept in chains "like in Guantanamo".

Abba is accused of acting as an accomplice to two members of Boko Haram, which is based in Nigeria but active in northern Cameroon, where the government says it has killed 1,200 people since 2013.

Prosecutors also accused him of failing to warn the authorities of "activities by the Boko Haram sect".

Cameroon introduced capital punishment for involvement in terror attacks or complicity in terrorism in a controversial law passed in 2014.

"Glorification of terrorism" also carries heavy penalties.

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