Johan Persson (photographer)
Johan Karl Persson (born March 3, 1982) is a Swedish photographer who was sentenced to eleven years in prison for terrorist crimes in Ethiopia on December 27, 2011, but who was later pardoned and released on 10 September 2012.
Persson studied at the School of Photography at Studium in Gothenburg, Sweden. Since he completed his education Persson has worked as a freelance photographer starting with reportage pictures of Skinheads of Beijing that can be seen through Photo Agency Kontinent He has collaborated with journalist Anna Roxvall during many years. Together they have produced highly praised articles about neo-Nazis in the United States and Mexican undocumented immigrants returning home published by Svenska Dagbladet (SVD). In addition, they reported on culture and politics in various African countries: refugee camps in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, speed trained amateur doctors in Malawi, sowing seeds for democracy in southern Sudan, pirate fishing in Camaroon and Botswana Heavy Metal generation.
Arrested for suspicion of terrorist crimes in Ethiopia
It was on July 1 that photographer Johan Persson and reporter Martin Schibbye were arrested by Ethiopian security forces while Persson and Schibbye were crossing the border from Somalia to Ethiopia in an attempt to make a report in the closed Ethiopian region of Ogaden. The purpose of the trip was to confirm information they previously received from refugees about human rights violations in Ogaden. On September 7 they were charged with the suspicion of terrorism offenses and for illegally entering the Ogaden region from Somalia. In December, Persson and Schibbye were sentenced to 11 years in jail.
On 10 September 2012 they were pardoned and released. Persson returned to Sweden on 14 September 2012 and subsequently held a press conference together with Martin Schibbye, telling about their time in Ethiopia.
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- Ethiopia: Swedish journalists must be released immediately and unconditionally Archived 2012-03-07 at the Wayback Machine Amnesty International 21 December 2011
- "This year's nominees to the Red Cross Prize for Journalism". 2011-12-27. Retrieved 2011-12-04.
- "More Kontinent » Photography Awards". Kontinent.se. Retrieved 2011-12-27.