International

Demonstration to free Detained Al Jazeera Journalists

In a letter hand delivered to the Egyptian Embassy, International Federation of Journalists’ (IFJ) President demanded the freedom of two Al Jazeera journalists who remain detained in Egypt.

A group of demonstrators organized outside the Egyptian Embassy in London on Tuesday, 12 November, to show solidarity for the journalists, reporter Abdullah Al Shami and Aljazeera cameraman Mohamed Bader, who have been detained in Egypt – for more than three months now.

“We urge the interim Egyptian government to charge them formally and put them for a fair, transparent and non-political trail or to release them immediately,” said IFJ President, Jim Boumelha.

The National Union of Journalists (NUJ UK and Ireland), the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and the Al Jazeera Media Network were among those who attended.

Abdullah Al Shami is 25 years old and was arrested on 14 August and transferred to Abu-Zabal prison. He had been working for Aljazeera covering events in Rabia Square at the time of his arrest, according to an Al Jazeera report.

Arrested for filming, Mohamed Bader, 28, had been recording anti-military coup protests on July 15 in Ramsis Square from on top of a bridge before a tear gas canister exploded nearby, forcing him to stop the live broadcast and run away without his gear.

Bader was transferred to the Tura prison for further interrogation and his detention has been renewed repeatedly ever since. His first baby was delivered while his father remained in detention.

The public prosecution referred Badr to the Criminal Court on charges of attempted murder, demonstration and carrying a firearm, accusations he denies, according to Al Jazeera.

The military-backed interim government accuses Al Jazeera of bias, misinformation and fabrication of events, charges the news organisation vehemently denies.

According to the manager of Al Jazeera’s Communication and International Relations Department, Ghassan Abu Hussein, this demonstration is part of a “national campaign” which was launched in countries through the Middle East and Europe.

“Our signals have been jammed hundreds of times, our bureaus have been raided numerous times and out equipment has been confiscated within Egypt,” Hussein said.

The Egyptian Embassy in London declined to issue a statement on this matter.

“Al Jazeera has been with Egypt since its bureau was launched there 15 years ago, but they do not approve the way we cover the regime. Yet, our slogan is, and always will be, ‘the opinion and the other opinion,’” said Hussein.

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One thought on “Demonstration to free Detained Al Jazeera Journalists

  1. Pingback: US journalists petition Egyptian to release detained Aljazeera journalists Most American Arab journalists remain silent | The Arab Daily News

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