Tanzanian immigration authorities detained CPJ sub-Saharan Africa Representative Muthoki Mumo and Africa Program Coordinator Angela Quintal in Dar es Salaam on November 7. Picture: CPJ

Johannesburg - CPJ's Africa program coordinator Angela Quintal and her colleague Muthoki Mumo have been released following their arrest in Tanzania, the department of international relations and cooperation confirmed on Thursday.

Quintal, a former Mail & Guardian editor, and Mumo were detained on Wednesday night by officers reportedly working with the Tanzanian immigration authority.

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) in a statement said the duo were arrested in their hotel room in Dar es Salaam and had their passports confiscated. 

Quintal and Mumo, CPJ's sub-Saharan Africa representative, were then escorted from the hotel were taken to an unknown location. 

The two were in the country on a reporting mission for CPJ.

Dirco spokesperson Ndivhuwo Mabaya confirmed to IOL that the two were released in the early hours of Thursday. 

"We don't know why they were detained, they don't know why they were detained. The high commissioner protested the whole night.

"At some point around 2.30am they were released and brought back to the hotel."

He said Quintal and Mumo were currently meeting with the SA high commissioner where they will be able to shed light on what led to the arrest. He added that Dirco would engage with Tanzanian authorities on the matter. 

Their passports are yet to be returned.