Jailed journalist freed

The publications director of the satirical Kinshasa biweekly Pili-Pili, Jean-Denis Lompoto, has been released from prison in the Democratic Republic of Congo after posting a US $100-bail bond, the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists reported on Monday.

"We welcome Lompoto's release," Anne Cooper, the committee's executive director, said.

Lompoto was released on Saturday. He had been detained on 19 March for defaming Mines Minister Eugene Diomi Ndongala by publishing a report on corruption allegations levelled against him. The paper's editor, Prosper Dawe, and reporter Angwalima Other were similarly charged.

Cooper said criminal prosecution of journalists continued to be a serious problem in the country and urged the government to remove criminal penalties for media offences.