Ugandan dissident arrested in Turkey: report

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Fred Kajjubi, aka Lumbuye, a Ugandan dissident residing in Turkey, has been arrested on unidentified charges, the Daily Monitor newspaper reported on Thursday.

Since the news of Lumbuye’s arrest, Ugandans in the diaspora have rallied their colleagues to petition the Turkish government and the United Nations to block any likely extradition of Lumbuye to Uganda, the report said.

Lumbuye is a critic of President Yowerini Museveni, who has been ruling the East African country since 1996, and uses social media to criticize Ugandan officials. Some of his statements are termed by Ugandan security officials as crimes against the state.

Last month President Museveni asked security agencies to deal with Ugandans in foreign countries who post fake news on social media that damages his image and that of the country.

Uganda’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Oryem Okello said at a press conference on Friday that Lumbuye is in the custody of Turkish authorities and has been charged with several offenses including immigration law violations. He is being deported to Uganda and will be brought to justice, Okello said.

According to the Chimp Reports news website, Kajjubi was expected to arrive in the country on Saturday.

Opposition lawmaker Muwadda Nkunyingi claimed that Lumbuye was arrested in Turkey through a kidnapping that was disguised as an arrest, The Pearl Post news website reported.

“My attention has been drawn to a suspected kidnap, disguised as arrest and detention of political activist and our friend Fred Lumbuye,” Nkunyingi said on his Facebook page.

According to Nkunyingi it would be illegal to extradite Lumbuye from Turkey to Uganda since there is no bilateral or reciprocal treaty between the two countries that allows extradition.

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