Leadership Council for Human Rights

~ Feet in the mud, head in the sky ~

Friday, September 14, 2007

Cairo cracks down on press after rumors surface about Mubarak’s health

Last week, Ebrahim Eisa, a journalist from the independent newspaper Adstur was charged with “spreading rumors that are harmful to national interests.” for allegedly publishing rumors about Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak’s deteriorating health. Now other members of the Egyptian media fear that they will be the next victims of the crackdown, Gulf News reported Wednesday.

Mubarak, 79, has been in charge for 26 years and has never selected a vice president.

“I think the future augurs ill for freedom of speech in the country,” said Abdullah Al Senawi, editor of Al Araby, the mouthpiece of the opposition Nasserist Party.

“What is taking place is a new form of terrorism against journalists at this particular time, as September is a notorious month for freedom in Egypt,” said veteran journalist Fahmi Heweidi.

In an effort to play down reports about his health, Mubarak recently took a trip to an industrial area near his summer beach resort in Alexandria. A few days later he accused the Islamist group the Muslim Brotherhood of starting the rumors about his health.

For the full article, click here.


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