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Oman denies bail for rights activist: HRW

Joe Stork, director of the Middle East and North Africa division of Human Rights Watch, speaks to the press on November 10, 2009, in Arbil, IraqHuman Rights Watch criticised Oman Tuesday for refusing to grant a rights activist bail pending an appeal of his conviction using the Internet to sow unrest in the normally stable sultanate. Blogger Saeed Jaddad, 48, was jailed this month for three years on charges of undermining the status and prestige of the state, inciting rallies via social media ahead of the anniversary of February 2011 protests and calling for what could undermine public order. He was also fined 1,000 rials ($2,600/2,385 euros), HRW said. Jaddad’s family paid the fine and posted bail, but “the court refused to release him citing separate charges before another court for his online activities,” said Joe Stork, deputy Middle East and Africa director.

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