The most popular independent radio station in Tunisia reported that two of its top broadcasters, Haythem El Mekki and Elyess Gharbi, have been summoned by police for questioning amid fears of an increasing government campaign against the media.
Radio Mosaique announced that its broadcasters Haythem El Mekki and Elyess Gharbi would be questioned by police on Friday, but the session was postponed up until Monday, as part of an investigation into journalistic content.
Haythem El Mekki, who conducts a show every day on Radio Mosaique that criticizes Saied’s policies, raised concerns on Monday about the country’s methods for recruiting police after a National Guardsman killed two visitors and three policemen in a bloody attack on a Jewish synagogue earlier this month.
This year, the government has arrested prominent opposition leaders and critics, including the head of Radio Mosaique, Nourredine Boutar. These actions have angered Western governments and human rights organizations.
After the 2011 revolution that toppled autocratic President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and sparked the Arab Spring, Tunisians made significant strides in terms of freedom of expression and the media.
However, according to activists and journalists, Saied’s rule presents an enormous threat to freedom of speech.
On Thursday, dozens of journalists and activists demonstrated against restrictions of freedoms and prosecutions of journalists and bloggers.