Tunisia: Newspaper executive Nasreddine Ben Saida released

A Tunisian court today released Nasreddine Ben Saida, general director of the Arabic-language daily Attounissia, who was arrested on 15 February after his newspaper published a photo German-Tunisian footballer Sami Khedira with his naked girlfriend. Rim Boukriba, a journalist for Attounisia, expressed her discontent about the arrest. “He was treated like a criminal … did he kill someone? Is he too dangerous to stay at large?” she said. “The authorities who jailed Ben Saida are seeking to silence us … their problem is not with the picture itself … but with the newspaper, which is popular, and widely read”, she told Index. “The picture is only an excuse,” she added. The court is expected to issue a verdict on the case on 8 March.


Tunisia: Journalists arrested in morality dispute

Three Tunisian journalists have been arrested on charges of offending public morality following the publication of a nude photograph. The Attounissia newspaper printed a photograph of Real-Madrid footballer Sami Khedira covering the breasts of his otherwise naked girlfriend, model Lena Gercke. The photograph drew an angry response from the country’s public prosecutor, resulting in the arrest of the newspaper’s publisher Nasreddine Ben Said, Habib Guizani, its editor-in- chief, and its world editor Hedi Hidhri. The photo was a reprint of a 2012 cover of the German edition of GQ Magazine.