• February 25, 2014
  • 4 minutes read

Military Trials Against Journalists Continue in Egypt

Military Trials Against Journalists Continue in Egypt

Freedom of the press in Egypt has fallen to its lowest-ever position, under the coup: several TV channels and newspapers have been closed, journalists detained, even callously killed, mouths muzzled, public debate gagged, and all views opposing the coup, whether in newspapers or satellite TV channels, repressed.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights states: “Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers”.

Escalating the campaign of repression and restriction of freedoms, which continues to plague media institutions in Egypt after the coup, the Northern Cairo Military Prosecution Service has decided to refer the journalist Eslam Homsy, the head of Rassd social media network, and Amr Salama Al Qazaz, a Rassd founder, to the Egyptian Military Court of Misdemeanors – under case number 3558 for the year 2013.

The first hearing starts on February 24th, 2014 at the northern Al-hai Al-asher court where the accused journalists are to face charges of divulging military secrets.

El Homsy was captured by police on November 18th, 2013 as he came out from Ain Shams University’s school of Commerce, after a lecture he had attended. El Homsy is a fourth year student at the same university. He was then taken to the Military Intelligence building for interrogation. Two weeks later, the Military Prosecution ordered his transfer to Tora prison. It has been 97 days since.

Amr El Qazaz was arrested on November, 11th, 2013 by the Egyptian intelligence forces, who broke into his home, smashed up his furniture, and stole all his personal effects and items from his car. He was then taken to a Military Intelligence facility where he was tortured. He, too, was transferred to Tora prison as per an order issued by the Military Prosecution Service. It has been 104 days since.

Notably, so far, nearly twenty members of Rassd staff, including founders, reporters, and camera men, have been detained by coup security forces.

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