Germany’s international broadcaster DW demanded the immediate release of its correspondent Antediteste Niragira, arrested by members of the Congolese intelligence service (ANR) while reporting on Burundian refugees in the Democratic Republic of Congo .
In a statement issued on 21 May, DW said Congolese authorities were refusing to provide further information on accusations of espionage against Niragira.
“The accusation that our correspondent is a spy is outrageous and baseless,” said DW spokesman Christoph Jumpelt. “We demand that the authorities in the DR Congo release Antediteste Niragira immediately and provide for his safe return to Burundi.”
Niragira had been preparing to file a report on Burundian refugees living in desolate conditions in a camp near the town of Kavimvira when he was arrested by ANR members and transferred to a prison in Uvira.
A lawyer commissioned by DW has been able to establish that Niragira has not been physically harmed.
Update – 23 May
Since news of his disappearance came through, DW has been working through all available channels to secure his release. On Tuesday 23 May, it was announced that Antediteste had been released and had returned to Burundi.