Dutch Foreign Ministry: Lawyers protesting Tunisian regime denied landing rights
An airplane chartered by a group of Dutch lawyers supporting a dissident Tunisian colleague has been denied landing rights by Tunisia, the Dutch foreign ministry said on Friday. The group, which includes around 50 lawyers were scheduled to depart on Monday.
"This flight was a private initiative and we heard from Tunis that the charter had not got landing rights," ministry spokesman Hans Janssen told AFP.
They wanted to attend a hearing at which the head of Tunisian bar association, Bechir Essid, might lose his position after he protested alleged legal abuses in the trial of jailed communist opposition leader Hamma Hammami.
Jan Hofdijk the Dutch organizer of the trip, for his part, said, "We want to be present to show our support because the independence of the head of the bar is a key point in an impartial justice system." The Dutch lawyer added that they were still hoping to get to the Tunisian capital of Tunis, in time for the hearing. (Albawaba.com)
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