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Asia-Pacific

French journalists face trial in Indonesia for reporting in Papua

media Thomas Dandois and Valentine Bourrat at Jayapura, 4 September 2014. AFP/Indrayadi

Two French journalists arrested in August for illegal reporting in Papua will face trial in Indonesia next Monday.

"They will be charged with misusing visa permits" said their lawyer Aristo Pangaribuan adding that the trial will start on 20 October at Jayapura district court in Papua.

Thomas Dandois and Valentine Bourrat were arrested on 6 August while reporting on the separatist movement in Papua for the Franco-German television channel Arte.

The two French journalists had tourist and not journalist visas - although Indonesia doesn't grant visas to report independently in Papua.

Such an offence in Indonesia is punishable by up to five years in jail.

Click to see the infographic

Although in the past, foreign journalists reporting in Papua haven't been brought to trial but deported.

Indonesia is highly sensitive about journalistic coverage in Papua as there is an insurgency in the eastern region against the government.

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