German Spokesperson: India is a Democratic country, Journalist should not be imprisoned
German Spokesperson: India is a Democratic country, Journalist should not be imprisoned

The foreign ministry of Germany has spoken against the arrest of an Indian journalist,  Mohammed Zubair (Alt News co-founder) on charges of promoting religious enmity in a tweet from 2018. The spokesperson at the German ministry said that they are in contact with European Union partners and freedom of the press is part of discussions between the EU and India.

The spokesperson said: “India describes itself as the world’s largest democracy. So, one can expect democratic values like freedom of expression and of the press to be given the necessary space there.”

The German Foreign ministry referred to the case and said “journalists should not be persecuted and imprisoned for what they say and write”. He added, “Free reporting is beneficial to any society and restrictions are a cause for concern. We are indeed aware of this particular case and our embassy in New Delhi is monitoring it very closely. We are also in contact on this with our EU partners on the ground, the EU has a human rights dialogue with India and freedom of expression and freedom of the press are a focus of those discussions”.

On Thursday, Delhi swiftly reacted to the German ministry spokesman's comments, saying Zubair's case was a domestic issue.  MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said. “I think the independence of our judiciary is well recognised and uninformed comments are unhelpful and should be avoided.” He added  “In itself, it’s a domestic issue. Let me emphasise that there is a judicial process underway in this case and I don’t think it would be appropriate for me, or anyone else, to comment on a case that is sub-judice.

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