CPJ awards Sudanese Amal Habbani for her journalism

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) honours Amal Habani, a journalist from Sudan, as one of the awardees of the International Press Freedom Awards this year.

Amal Habbani, one of the awardees of the Committee to Protect Journalists' International Press Freedom Awards 2018 (file photo)

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) honours Amal Habbani, a journalist from Sudan, as one of the awardees of the International Press Freedom Awards this year.

Habbani is a freelance journalist and contributor to the Sudanese news outlet El Taghyeer, who during her decade-long career in Sudan has faced physical attacks, imprisonment, and threats by the authorities in connection with her coverage of protests and official wrongdoing, CPJ said in a statement about its event yesterday.

Winners will be honored at CPJ’s annual award and benefit dinner on November 20 in New York.

Habbani was one of the journalists who were arrested on January 16 and 17 while covering protests in greater Khartoum against an unprecedented increase in the price of bread. She was earlier arrested for her work in 2011, 2016 and 2017. Sources at the time reported that she was mistreated while being detained.

“At a time when journalism is being vilified, mocked, and undermined by so many political leaders, CPJ is recognizing some of the world's most courageous and dedicated reporters for their contribution to informing their communities and the world,” said CPJ Executive Director Joel Simon. “These journalists put their lives and liberty on the line every day just to do their job. There can be no greater affirmation that journalism matters.”

The other awardees are Nguyen Ngoc Nhu Quynh, one of Vietnam's most prominent independent bloggers, Luz Mely Reyes, a Venezuelan investigative reporter and co-founder of an independent news website, and Anastasiya (Nastya) Stanko, a journalist and TV presenter who is a member of the "Stop censorship" movement.

Amnesty International USA honoured Habbani for her coverage of human rights in 2014.

Coverage of protests

In February this year, CPJ released a statement calling for the release of the detained reporter Ahmed Jadein, for reporting on anti-price hike protests in Khartoum North.

In January and February, the Sudanese authorities confiscated the printed editions of a number of newspapers for reporting on the demonstrations. The government's decision to devaluate the local currency in January and rising bread prices sparked ongoing protests across the country, which have resulted in police killing at least one protester and arresting hundreds of activists.