A group of Nigerian writers, intellectuals and media figures called on President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday to stop the persecution of journalists, after an online publication's news staff was briefly detained. Nigerian police late on Thursday arrested the editor and a reporter for the Premium Times, the rights group Amnesty International said, in a dispute raising concern about press freedom in Africa's biggest democracy. "What we see is a disturbing trend that suggests not just an attempt to criminalise the important work that journalists in Nigeria do, but also a drive to frighten and cower and stop this critical constitutionally mandated work through the aggressive use of the state security apparatus," said a joint letter to Buhari signed by 10 Nigerian public figures.
Rescuers have pulled out six people alive from under the ruins of an Italian mountain hotel engulfed in a devastating avalanche two days ago, officials said on Friday. Federica Chiavaroli, a junior minister at the Justice ministry, confirmed the dramatic development to reporters in the nearby town of Penne, where the rescue effort was being coordinated and some relatives were anxiously awaiting news of missing loved ones.