Egyptian police confiscate human rights newspaper

Ahram Online, Sunday 15 Jun 2014

Head of rights NGO which publishes the newspaper calls Saturday's raid proof that 'a crackdown on civil society NGOs has begun'

Wasla 17th issue cover (Photo: Official ANHRI page)

Egyptian security forces on Saturday raided the print shop responsible for producing the newspaper of a prominent human rights NGO on accusations that the publication was inciting the overthrow of the current government.

The newspaper, Wasla, is published sporadically by the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI), which focuses on freedom of expression and internet liberties in the Middle East.

Security forces seized all 1,000 copies of the paper's 17th issue and arrested an employee in the print shop, according to ANHRI's website.

Security officials refused to show ANHRI lawyers the details of the seizure warrant. However, one of the officials told them that the newspaper was confiscated due to accusations of having links to the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood.

ANHRI head Gamal Eid called the accusations "absurd and ironic" and a "sign that a crack down on civil society NGOs has begun," according to the ANHRI website.

He also expressed his concern over the future of freedom of expression in Egypt.

In February, Cairo's Court for Urgent Matters upheld the designation of the Brotherhood as a terrorist group, following months of being blamed for a spate of military attacks in the country since the ouster of president Mohamed Morsi last July.

ANHRI has printed the newspaper Wasla for four years, with 72 issues to date. The publication compiles the writings of web-based journalists and activists from social media sites in order to provide older generations who aren't internet savvy with access to the content.

Search Keywords:
Short link: