Top Leaderboard, Site wide
October 21, 2014
Truthdig: Drilling Beneath the Headlines
Sign up for Truthdig's Email NewsletterLike Truthdig on FacebookFollow Truthdig on TwitterSubscribe to Truthdig's RSS Feed

Get Truthdig's headlines in your inbox!






Mad Pilgrimage of the Flesh


Truthdig Bazaar
Human Smoke

Human Smoke

By Nicholson Baker
$19.80

more items

 
Ear to the Ground

Al-Jazeera Journalists Sentenced to Prison in Egypt (Video)

Email this item Email    Print this item Print    Share this item... Share

Posted on Jun 23, 2014

    From left, journalists Mohamed Fahmy, Peter Greste and Baher Mohamed in a cage along with several other defendants during their trial in Cairo. Photo by AP/Hamada Elrasam

The principle of free speech was savaged as Egypt’s judiciary sentenced three Al-Jazeera journalists with up to a decade in prison on charges of aiding terrorists and endangering national security. The three men were honored in Truthdig’s “Truthdigger of the Week” column two weeks ago.

‘Democracy Now!’:

The Guardian reports:

The former BBC correspondent Peter Greste, from Australia, the ex-CNN journalist Mohamed Fahmy, and local producer Baher Mohamed were jailed for seven, seven and 10 years respectively. Four students and activists indicted in the case were sentenced to seven years.

The judge also handed 10-year sentences to the British journalists Sue Turton and Dominic Kane and the Dutch journalist Rena Netjes, who were not in Egypt but were tried in absentia.

The courtroom packed with journalists, diplomats and relatives erupted at the verdict which came despite what independent observers said was a complete lack of evidence.

Fahmy, a Canadian-Egyptian citizen, shouted from the defendants’ cage as he was led away, “They’ll pay for this.” His mother and fiancee both broke down in tears while his brother, who traveled from Kuwait for the verdict, was furious.

“This is not a system,” he said. “This is not a country. They’ve ruined our lives. It shows everything that’s wrong with the system: it’s corrupt. This country is corrupt through and through.”

The Guardian continued:

Diplomats and rights campaigners who have observed the trial expressed incredulity at the verdict. “On the basis of the evidence that we’ve seen, we can’t understand the verdict,” said Ralph King, the Australian ambassador in Cairo. “We will make our feelings clear to the Egyptian government and we will continue to provide all possible consular assistance.”

Evidence provided by the prosecution included footage from channels and events with nothing to do with Egyptian politics or al-Jazeera. It included videos of trotting horses from Sky News Arabia, a song by the Australian singer Gotye, and a BBC documentary from Somalia.

Mohamed Lotfy, executive director of the Egyptian Commission for Rights and Freedoms who has observed every session of the trial for Amnesty, said the verdict sent a chilling message to all opposition figures in Egypt.

Read more here.

—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.

More Below the Ad

Advertisement

Square, Site wide

New and Improved Comments

If you have trouble leaving a comment, review this help page. Still having problems? Let us know. If you find yourself moderated, take a moment to review our comment policy.

 
Right 1, Site wide - BlogAds Premium
 
Right 2, Site wide - Blogads
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 
 
 
Right Skyscraper, Site Wide
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 

A Progressive Journal of News and Opinion   Publisher, Zuade Kaufman   Editor, Robert Scheer
© 2014 Truthdig, LLC. All rights reserved.