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Berends, Translator Detained Again in Nigeria

By Tom White

We reported on Friday, that documentary filmmaker Andrew Berends had been provisionally released to US Embassy personnel, and was to report to State Security Services on Monday for what is expected to be "routine final processing." But, according to a report on a blog that's been set up to monitor Berends' situation, the filmmaker remains in detention with the SSS today, and the Nigerian agency has retained the filmmaker's passport and belongings and has given no indication as to Berends' release.

Samuel George, Berends' Nigerian translator, is also in custody.

New York Senators Charles Schumer and Hillary Clinton have been actively advocating for Berends' release (Berends lives in New York), as has Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy, but it is important for the documentary community to keep the pressure on. We at IDA will continue to monitor this situation, and we encourage you to do so as well, in addition to contacting your Senators and Congressional Representatives via this link..