3 men detained for protesting Equatorial Guinea soccer tournament

Fans of Equatorial Guinea cheer with a huge national flag before their Group A soccer match against Gabon at the African Cup of Nations in Bata January 25, 2015 (Photo: Reuters)
Thursday 29 Jan 2015
Human rights groups are demanding that Equatorial Guinea free three men allegedly detained for protesting the country's plans to host Africa's premier soccer championship while half the population has no access to clean water.

Amnesty International and rights groups from Spain, Portugal and the United States called the three prisoners of conscience.

They urged the government Thursday to protect them from the torture common in the West African nation's prisons.

Political activist Celestino Okenve was arrested Jan. 14 for distributing leaflets calling for a boycott of the African Cup of Nations. Two others were arrested in connection with the leaflets.

They said President Teodoro Obiang was wasting money while people suffer. Equatorial Guinea has the highest per capita income in Africa but its oil money benefits only a few.

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