Burundian authorities release Rwandan journalist

Etienne Besabesa is now a free man

Etienne Besabesa is now a free man

Rwandan journalist, Etienne Besabesa, who was arrested and detained in Bujumbura recently has been released and has returned home, Rwanda Media commission (RMC) said Friday.

“Journalist Etienne Besabesa is now out of jail and has arrived in Rwanda. RMC cordially congratulates the release of Besabesa” the Kigali based commission said on their twitter handle.

Besabesa was arrested on June 8, when he wandered off into Burundian territory while on assignment at the Rwandan border area to monitor and file reports on the refugee influx.

While in Burundian custody he was accused of spying on the Burundian government, but his editors said earlier in the negotiation process between Kigali and Bujumbura, that his decision to cross to the Burundian side was not part of the job assignment.

Besabesa was due to appear the Burundian court for arraignment but the authorities both countries have chosen to resolve the issue diplomatically.

Efforts to get the now free journalist’s side of the story were fruitless as he declined to comment.