Tunisia: Fugitive rapper to appeal conviction

Tunisian rapper Weld El 15, on the run since receiving a 21-month jail sentence in absentia in August 2013, will appeal the ruling in court in December 2013, his lawyer said.

The new trial will take place at the court in Hammamet on 5 December 2013, the lawyer Ghazi Mrabet told AFP, adding that his client would be present.

The rapper, whose real name is Alaa Yaacoubi, and another musician Klay BBJ, were both given 21-month jail terms in absentia for performing songs deemed insulting to the police at a concert in the eastern town of Hammamet.

The original trial took place without either of the young men being summoned to court or even informed of the proceedings.

A Tunisian court on 25 November handed suspended four-month prison sentences to another Tunisian rapper and a journalist for their alleged role in clashes with police which erupted outside court in June following Weld El 15’s initial conviction.

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