Belly dancer fined over TV channel violations

El-Sayed Gamal ElDeen, Wednesday 23 Apr 2014

Sama El-Masry became notorious after she released amateur videos mocking Islamists during the rule of president Mohamed Morsi

Belly dancer Sama El-Masry
Belly dancer Sama El-Masry

A court has fined a controversial belly dancer LE10,000 and the ordered the confiscation of broadcasting equipment after she was found to have run an unlicensed television channel.

Sama El-Masry was arrested in a raid on Sunday.

She has been in the limelight since she began releasing amateur videos mocking Islamists during the rule of president Mohamed Morsi.

In January, she launched her own channel, Feloul, an Arabic word used since the 2011 uprising to refer to supporters of or figures in the old regime.

The ruling comes after El-Masry and controversial lawyer Mortada Mansour exchanged crude allegations and threats in online videos and televised interviews.

In one of the interviews, Mansour, who briefly declared his intention to stand for president, threatened to close down El-Masry's channel.

It could not be confirmed whether a complaint by Mansour led to the court ruling.

It is unclear how the ruling will be enforced.

In a similar case last year, the authorities banned the Egyptian affiliate of Al Jazeera from working in the country.

They accused Al Jazeera Mubashr Misr of biased reporting in favour of Mohamed Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood, and of working without appropriate licences.

Nearly eight months after the decision, the channel can still be viewed in Egypt.

A number of the network's journalists are currently on trial.

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