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Egypt's Press Syndicate reports media restrictions on third day of voting

Reporters complain of being barred from covering the voting process Wednesday on the claim that their permits covered the scheduled vote, not its extra day

Ahram Online, Wednesday 28 May 2014
Elections
A man votes during the second day of voting in the presidential election, in Cairo, Egypt, Tuesday, May 27, 2014.(Photo AP)
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In its first statement on the third day of elections, Egypt's Press Syndicate reported several violations of media freedoms, including barring reporters from covering the vote at polling stations.

The syndicate’s operations room received several complaints, the statement said. In Giza, reporters were prevented from covering the electoral process by security using claims that their permits had expired and were only valid for the first two days of elections and not for the extra third day.

The Presidential Elections Commission (PEC) extended the voting period an extra day, making Wednesday the last day of the presidential elections.

Reporters Mahmoud Abu El-Dahab, Mohamed Salem and Mohamed Ibrahim of El-Badil have not been allowed by security to take pictures of polling stations in Imbaba and Hawamdeya with the excuse that their permits had expired. The reporters were told to come back in the evening when the polling stations are more full.

Reporter Abdel-Nasser El-Nouri from El-Badil was also barred from coverage.

Security forces detained Mahmoud Bakkar of Masrawy and Hossam Rushdi of Al-Esbou in a polling station in Maadi and confiscated their cameras, emptying them of their contents. The syndicate called the interior ministry to intervene.

The syndicate also contacted PEC and was informed that permits for journalists are valid throughout the three days.

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