Egypt's Human Rights Council condemns 'violations against press'

Ahram Online , Thursday 5 May 2016

The National Council for Human Rights statement Wednesday also called for government imposed gag orders to be rescinded

Journalist Syndicate
A journalist argues with a policeman during a protest to demand the sacking of the interior minister on May 4, 2016 outside the Journalists' Syndicate headquarters in Cairo, after an unprecedented police raid to arrest two reporters (AFP)

Egypt's semi-governmental National Council for Human Rights (NCHR) has condemned "violations against the freedom of press and media" in the context of the current crisis between police authorities and the Journalists Syndicate over the recent storming of its building and the arrest of two journalists.

"The council condemns the [intrusion] in terms of arresting journalists for freedom of expression reasons, as well as imposing gag orders that block the right of citizens to be up to date with all public opinion issues," the council said in a statement Wednesday.

On Wednesday, over 2,000 members of Egypt's Journalists Syndicate gathered at its headquarters in Cairo's Downtown for an emergency meeting to respond to the storming earlier in the week of the headquarters by police.

Security forces surrounded the building from all directions and regime supporters hurled insults at members attending the meeting.

The syndicate issued a statement at the meeting outlining a set of demands on the government, including the dismissal of interior minister Madgy Abdel-Ghaffar and the release of journalists jailed in cases related to freedom of expression, along with instructions for news outlets on how to support these demands.

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