Egypt Releases Al-Jazeera Journalist Peter Greste
On Sunday afternoon Al-Jazeera English correspondent Peter Greste, who along with two colleagues had been jailed for more than a year by the Egyptian government, was winging his way to Cyprus to eventually return to his family in Australia.
The other two journalists, Baher Mohamed and Mohamed Fahmy, are still detained in Cairo.
The three were sentenced to seven to 10 years on charges including spreading lies to help a terrorist organization – a reference to the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood. One month ago, however, a court ordered their retrial.
A security official said Fahmy was expected to be released from Cairo’s Tora prison within days. His fiancée said she hoped he would be free soon and deported to Canada. “His deportation is in its final stages. We are hopeful,” Marwa Omara told Reuters.
Canada’s foreign ministry welcomed what it called positive developments. “We remain very hopeful that Mr. Fahmy’s case will be resolved shortly,” it said in a statement.
Many Egyptians see Qatar-based Al Jazeera as a force set on destabilizing the country, a view that has been encouraged in the local media which labeled the journalists “The Marriott Cell”, because they worked from a hotel of the U.S.-based chain.
–Posted by Kasia Anderson