Tunisia Femen activist cleared of defamation: Lawyer

TUNIS (AFP) - A court on Monday dismissed one case against Tunisian Femen activist Amina Sboui in which she was tried for contempt and defamation, her lawyer said, calling the verdict "a victory".

But Ghazi Mrabet said Ms Sboui still faces a pepper spray charge which carries a prison sentence of between six months and five years.

She could also be charged with desecrating a cemetery for which she could be jailed for up to two years if found guilty.

"The court decided to dismiss the case against Amina. It is a victory, the judiciary has begun to understand that she has been unfairly prosecuted," the defence lawyer said of the contempt and defamation charge.

She was on trial on those two counts after she charged that detainees were tortured in the prison where she has been detained since May after daubing the word "Femen" on a wall near a cemetery in the city of Kairouan.

She was protesting against an annual congress that hardline Salafists had planned to hold in the historic Islamic centre of learning before the government banned it.