News

Egypt’s State-Owned Al-Ahram Publishes ‘Unprecedented’ Editorial Taking Aim at Interior Ministry

Egypt’s State-Owned Al-Ahram Publishes ‘Unprecedented’ Editorial Taking Aim at Interior Ministry

Previous protest in front of the press syndicate, on Apr. 28, 2016. Photo: Asmaa Gamal, Aswat Masriya
Previous protest in front of the press syndicate, on Apr. 28, 2016. Photo: Asmaa Gamal, Aswat Masriya

In an “unprecedented” move, Egypt’s main state-owned newspaper Al-Ahram published on Tuesday an editorial criticizing the interior ministry’s controversial decision to storm the Press Syndicate on Sunday to arrest two journalists from inside the building.

Police arrested Amr Badr and Mahmoud El Sakka, two journalists, from inside the Press Syndicate after security forces stormed the building on Sunday night in a move described by the syndicate’s head as “unprecedented” and a “violation of law.”

The interior ministry published a statement accusing Badr and El-Sakka of “hiding” and using the syndicate as a “safe haven” and capitalizing on the involvement of the syndicate to create a crisis and cause chaos between all parties involved. The ministry also denied the storming of the syndicate, saying that only eight police officers were sent out to arrest the journalists.

Tuesday’s editorial described Sunday’s incident as “unacceptable actions against freedom” on the ministry’s part, saying that “the interior ministry has committed a number of mistakes during the past period…and will not succeed in its malicious goal of shutting mouths and suppressing freedoms of opinion and expression, which are outlined in the constitution that was not read by the security heads, who wrongly believe they are protecting the state and its security.”

The editorial, whose publication coincides with World Press Freedom Day, went on to deride the interior ministry for treating journalists like terrorists, particularly as many families are dealing with their youths languishing “behind prison walls without [legal] cases, but also under the fantasy of working against the state.”

“We still do not know what is this state that the security speaks of and pretends to fight to secure it; have we and our youths become enemies of the state?”

The editorial ended by calling on the ministry to stop playing “this tired game” and for a swift investigation into the incident to resolve the tensions between the interior ministry and the country’s journalists, adding that the interior minister, Magdy Abdel Ghaffar, must step down in the wake of the ministry’s actions.

Although the editorial was published without a byline, it remains an unexpected move by the newspaper, which is widely known for publishing editorials in support of the government an generally falling in line with the state’s discourse.

A recent report by the Committee to Protect Journalists ranked Egypt as the second-worst jailer of journalists worldwide, while Egypt’s government has continuously denied any restrictions on the press and freedoms.

Egyptian Found Dead on Railway Track in Italy: Foreign Ministry
US Congressional Delegation Visits Egypt to Discuss Counterterrorism, Regional Security

Subscribe to our newsletter


News

More in News

Obligatory Anti-Divorce Courses to Begin in Egyptian Universities

Egyptian StreetsJuly 18, 2019

Plastic Bags to Be Banned in Egypt’s Marsa Alam

Egyptian StreetsJuly 16, 2019

Egyptian Authorities Free Trans Woman and LGBT+ Activist After 4 Months in Prison

Egyptian StreetsJuly 16, 2019

Egypt’s National Council for Women Visit Women’s Prisons to Ensure Quality of Care

Egyptian StreetsJuly 15, 2019

Cairo to Begin Planting Gardens on Rooftops

Egyptian StreetsJuly 15, 2019

Egypt Launched ‘Decent Life’ Initiative to Assist People Living in Underprivileged Villages

Egyptian StreetsJuly 14, 2019

Surveillance Cameras Installed After Animal Abuse at Cairo’s Birqash Camel Market

Egyptian StreetsJuly 11, 2019

Pro-Mubarak Facebook Page Admin Arrested for ‘Spreading Fake News’

Egyptian StreetsJuly 11, 2019
Egyptian Streets is an independent, young, and grass roots news media organization aimed at providing readers with an alternate depiction of events that occur on Egyptian and Middle Eastern streets, and to establish an engaging social platform for readers to discover and discuss the various issues that impact the region.

© 2017 Egyptian Streets. All Rights Reserved.