Egyptian newspaper editor Qandil stopped from leaving the country due to court case

Ahram Online , Saturday 8 Aug 2015

Abdel-Halim Qandil, the well-known Nasserist journalist who faces a trial, was prevented from leaving the country for failing to show court permission to travel

Abdel Halim Qandil (Photo: Al-Ahram)

The editor-in-chief of an Egyptian newspaper was prevented on Saturday from leaving the country by Cairo airport authorities because he failed to present a judge's permission to leave the country while facing a court trial.

Abdel-Halim Qandil, the editor of weekly Sout Al-Umma ("Voice of the Nation") was prevented from travelling to Jordan, Al-Ahram's Cairo airport bureau chief, Ashraf El-Hadidi, told Ahram Online.  

El-Hadidi said that Qandil has been banned from travelling because he is facing the charge of insulting the judiciary, a case that has been ongoing since 2014.

Qandil, along with 18 other public figures, was banned from travel after being charged with insulting the judiciary in the same case.

However, in October 2014, the court lifted the travel ban against all 18.

Qandil provided passport control with the document showing that Cairo Criminal Court had decided to lift the travel ban, but this was not enough to entitle him to travel.

Egyptian law stipulates that citizens facing trial must obtain judicial permission to travel.

Others charged in the same case with Qandil include academic and liberal politician Amr Hamzawy; former Islamist MP and judge Mahmoud El-Khodeiri; pro-Muslim Brotherhood TV host Nour Abdel-Hafez; human rights lawyer Amir Salem; fugitive Al-Gamaa Al-Islamiya leader Assem Abdel-Maged; and leftist rights activist Alaa Abdel-Fattah.

The group are also accused of attempting to influence the opinions of sitting judges.

Qandil, a longtime opponent of the Mubarak regime, is a well-known supporter of the June 30 alliance which supported the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in 2013.

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