Journalists detained over a video of the president of South Sudan are released


On April 5, 2021, two South Sudanese journalists who were arrested in February 2021 for filming a video of President Salva Kiir were released after reaching a plea deal with prosecutors. The two journalists, Dengdit Ayok and Deng Juliet, from the Eye Radio station, were charged with filming without permission and spreading false information. The two had filmed a video of President Kiir and his entourage as they were on their way to a function in his hometown of Bor in February 2021.

The two journalists were released on bail after reaching a plea deal with prosecutors and agreeing to delete the video. They were also asked to pay a fine of 100,000 South Sudanese Pounds ($5,000).

The pair had received international attention and support from press freedom groups and other media organizations, including the Committee to Protect Journalists. They had been facing up to five years in prison if convicted.

The release of the two journalists is seen as a victory for press freedom in South Sudan. It also follows the release of a number of other journalists who have been detained in the country in recent months as the government cracks down on critical media outlets.