Middle East and North Africa cases 2003: Country List    I   Middle East and North Africa Regional Home Page
How CPJ investigates and classifies attacks on the press

JUNE 1, 2003

Mostafa Bakry, Al-Osboa
Mahmoud Bakry, Al-Osboa

Egypt's highest court, the Court of Cassation, rejected the appeals of Mostafa Bakry and his brother Mahmoud Bakry, editor-in-chief and deputy editor-in-chief, respectively, of the weekly newspaper Al-Osboa. The two, who were free pending the high court ruling, had been sentenced to prison in 1998 after being convicted of libeling Mohamed Abdel Aal, head of Egypt's suspended Social Justice Party. On June 2, the journalists were taken from their homes and transferred to Mazraa Tora Prison, south of Cairo, to serve out their sentences.

The case stems from articles the journalists wrote in 1996 in the opposition daily Al-Ahrar, which Mostafa Bakry was editing at the time, accusing Abdel Aal of financial misconduct. In May 2003, the State Security Court sentenced Abdel Aal to prison for taking bribes from businessmen in exchange for not writing about them in his party's newspaper, Al Watan al-Arabi.

August 11, 2003
Posted: February 4, 2005

Reda Helal, Al-Ahram

Helal, an editor with Egypt's semiofficial daily Al-Ahram, has been missing since August 11, 2003. Helal, considered controversial by some because of his outspoken support for the U.S.-led war in Iraq, was last seen entering his home in the capital, Cairo, on the afternoon he disappeared. Local journalists say there is little evidence pointing to who kidnapped him, or if he was even kidnapped. CPJ continues to investigate the case.