Newswoman in Namibia Detained

by Episcopal Churchmen for South Africa
New York, New York, United States
December 14, 1984
2 pages
Type: Mailing
Coverage in Africa: Namibia, South Africa
Coverage outside Africa: United States
Language: English
The mailing reports that Gwen Lister, well-known journalist in Namibia and freelance reporter for the BBC London, was today arrested by the South African Police in Windhoek. She is being held under terms of the South African Official Secrets Act and the Post Office Act. The mailing says that, during a press conference in Windhoek, Lister discussed an envelope she found in her box at the central post office that contained a document marked Top Secret from the South African Police headquarters in Pretoria instructing the Windhoek postmaster to intercept all her incoming and outgoing mail for six months. Police ordered South African and Namibian newspapers not to publish the story lest they be in violation of Pretoria's Official Secrets Act. The mailing reports that the U.S. government in late February opened what it calls a 'liaison office' in Windhoek, Namibia and quotes Andimba Toivo Ya Toivo, Secretary-General of SWAPO of Namibia, condemning this act. Washington claims that the office was to assist the new cease-fire between South Africa and Angola and that it was approved by both governments. The mailing asks people to send protests to Secretary George Shultz at the State Department.
Used by permission of former board members of the Episcopal Churchpeople for a Free Southern Africa.
Collection: George M. Houser (Africa collection), Michigan State University Libraries Special Collections