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Egypt

Blog   |   Egypt

Families of jailed journalists in Egypt await outcome of latest trials

An undated family photo shows Mohamed al-Fakharany, front right, and his brother, Abdullah, left. A verdict is due in Abdullah al-Fakharany's case in May. The journalist has been imprisoned since 2013. (Al-Fakharany family)

Every two weeks Mohamed al-Fakharany prepares to visit his brother, Abdullah al-Fakharany, in prison. He packs food, clothes, books, and, most importantly, written responses to his older brother's letters. Mohamed al-Fakharany, who told CPJ that he has never missed a visit, was only 11 when his brother-- the executive director of opposition news outlet Rassd--was arrested in 2013 and later sentenced to 25 years in prison on anti-state charges.

Blog   |   Egypt

Egypt's state of emergency may act to further silence press

Egypt's President Sisi, pictured in Cairo in March 2017, has declared a state of emergency and said the press needs to be more responsible. (AFP/Khaled Desouki)

Hours after two bombs ripped through packed Palm Sunday services in Coptic Churches in Alexandria and Tanta on April 9, killing nearly 50 people, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi announced a three-month state of emergency. The measure is in many ways an extension of what has already been in place in parts of the Sinai Peninsula since 2014, and a further sign of Sisi's determination to control the flow of information in the country.

Blog   |   Egypt

As Egypt-U.S. relationship moves forward, jailed Egyptian journalists left behind

A child poses for a picture with a poster of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi in Cairo, August 6, 2015, as supporters cheered improvements to the Suez Canal.

Among the things Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi and U.S. President Donald Trump are scheduled to discuss during their April 3 meeting in Washington is Egypt's fight against terrorism. Egypt's government has broadly interpreted this fight to include jailing dozens of journalists, including photographer Abdelrahman Yaqot, who a few days before el-Sisi arrives in Washington will have checked in at the local police station, as he must every month to meet the terms of his release from prison.

Blog   |   Egypt

'People talk as they please' Sisi says in comments on Egypt's press freedom record

President el-Sisi, pictured with Portugal's president, right, during a state visit to Lisbon. The Egyptian leader told a broadcaster he supports freedom of expression. (Jose Manuel Ribeiro/AFP)

In Egypt last week a journalist was barred from travel without official explanation, a reporter was accused of criminal defamation over a 2015 investigation on child prostitution, and President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi defended Egypt's freedom of expression record. An appeal date was also set for the Journalists' Syndicate leaders who were sentenced this month to two years in prison.

Blog   |   Egypt

Hunger-striking journalist injured in prison uprising

In this file photo, an Egyptian protests the government's crackdown on free expression to mark World Press Freedom Day, May 3, 2016 (AP/Nariman El-Mofty)

News of the hospitalization of an imprisoned photojournalist after security forces cracked down on an uprising in Borg al-Arab prison tops the list of attacks on the press last week in Egypt. Also last week: Two leaders of the Journalists' Syndicate were sentenced to two years in prison each but remain free on bail; a presidential pardon included two journalists who had nearly completed their prison terms; a court ordered the release of Ismail Alexandrani, but the prosecution successfully appealed; and finally, Mahmoud Abou Zeid Shawkan was at last allowed to tell the judge hearing his case that he is a photojournalist.

Blog   |   Egypt

Journalists detained during Egypt's day of protests

A masked policeman gestures to a photographer in Cairo ahead of planned protests on November 11. At least four journalists were detained covering areas where rallies were due to take place. (AP/Amr Nabil)

Four journalists were detained November 11 amid a heavy deployment of security forces in Egypt's cities in response to calls for nationwide protests over economic reforms. The protests were fewer and smaller than anticipated, but journalists were still harassed and, in some cases, arrested, according to local and international media. One journalist remains in custody. Separately, a gag order on an investigation into the funding of civil society organizations remains in place, and courts are due to hear two criminal defamation cases brought by public officials against reporters.

Blog   |   Egypt

In Egypt, censorship, an arrest, and court hearings for journalists

Posters calling for the release of photojournalists Mohammad al-Batawi, right, and Shawkan, are held up in Cairo. A U.N. working group says that Shawkan's detention is arbitrary. (AP/Amr Nabil)

Restrictions against the press continue in Egypt, with ongoing trials of journalists, some of whom have been in detention for more than three years, allegations that a TV station was ordered to drop a planned broadcast of an interview with a former official, and a reporter detained while trying to cover a sensitive story. Egypt has been a leading jailer of journalists for more than a year, and the country's press is regularly harassed. CPJ has documented the following press freedom violations in the past week:

Blog   |   Egypt

Egyptian government clash with Journalists Syndicate marks turning point in censorship fight

Journalists carry Yehia Qallash, head of the Egyptian Journalists Syndicate, at a protest against restrictions on the press in Cairo on May 4. (Reuters)

A standoff this week between Egyptian authorities and the country's influential Journalists Syndicate could mark a turning point in the fight for media control that has raged since before President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi took office.

Blog   |   Egypt

CPJ joins call for Egypt to end its persecution of journalists, civil society leaders

The Committee to Protect Journalists joined 14 other organizations in calling on Egyptian authorities today to halt the persecution of journalists, press freedom advocates, and civil society leaders. Restrictive measures have included travel bans, asset freezes, and the re-opening of a five-year-old investigation into the foreign funding of human rights organizations.

Blog   |   Egypt

Beyond the pardons, press freedom still under threat in Egypt

Sue Turton, Dominic Kane, center, and Peter Greste, at a press conference in CPJ's New York office. The Al-Jazeera journalists, who were convicted in absentia in Egypt, are calling on President el-Sisi to intervene in their cases. (AP/Julie Jacobson)

Today the Committee to Protect Journalists hosted a press conference for three Al-Jazeera journalists who have been convicted in absentia in Egypt. The journalists expressed solidarity with other members of the press who have been charged by the Egyptian government, and called on President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi to intervene in their cases.

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