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Journalist who sought refuge in Thailand is said to return to China
Chinese journalist Li Xin who disappeared while seeking refuge in Thailand told his wife by telephone on Wednesday that he had returned to China and was being held by the police, she said. NEW YORK TIMES

Constitutional Court in Zimbabwe says criminal defamation law is invalid
The Constitutional Court Wednesday ruled that the criminal defamation law under which dozens of journalists have been arrested is dead and invalid. The ruling means that journalists deemed to have defamed people during the course of their work cannot be arrested under the law. ALL AFRICA

Saudi court spares poet’s life but gives him 8 years and 800 lashes e
A Saudi court has commuted the death sentence against Ashraf Fayadh to eight years’ jail and 800 lashes, his lawyer said. NEW YORK TIMES

Two Reformist Journalists charged in Iran after three months in detention
Three months after their arrests, journalists Issa Saharkhiz and Ehsan Mazandarani have been formally charged with “acting against national security” and “propaganda against the state.” ICHRI

Egypt’s Sisi says he is open to criticism following cartoonist’s release
Egypt President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi said on Monday he does not mind criticism, stressing that it’s his job to placate disgruntled youths, a day after cartoonist Islam Gawish was arrested for what critics suggested was a retaliation for caricatures mocking the former army chief. AL-BAWABA

A step closer to protecting journalists in Afghanistan
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani issued a presidential decree this week reaffirming the government’s commitment to freedom of expression and protection of media workers. The decree commits the government to expedite investigations of journalists killed since 2002 and to make the results of these inquiries public. HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH