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Issue of Blocked Websites Will Be ‘Resolved’ Within a Week: Head of Press Syndicate

Issue of Blocked Websites Will Be ‘Resolved’ Within a Week: Head of Press Syndicate

The issue of disabled access to the news websites blocked by an anonymous authority in Egypt will be resolved within a week at most, head of the press syndicate Abdel Mohsen Salama said on Sunday.

Salama promised that the issue would be fixed within a week, according to the state-owned news agency MENA. The head of the Press Syndicate didn’t disclose further information on the blockade and whether all websites will be enabled again or not, AhramOnline reported.

Egypt has blocked over 129 websites over the past two months, including news websites and VPN websites, according to the Association of Freedom of Thought and Expression (AFTE). The blocked websites include Mada Masr, Medium, Daily News Egypt and Cyberghost.

The blockade of the websites has gradually increased, with no specific body from the government announcing responsibility. However, they were all blocked on claims of spreading lies and promoting terrorism.

Several local and international rights organizations condemned the blockade decision and described it as unconstitutional, as it violates Article 57 stipulating the freedom of media and public’s right to know and to access information.

The access to several blocked websites is enabled every now and then through multiple Internet services providers. However, the blockade resumes shortly after.

AFTE said in one of its reports that there might be internet monitoring through Vodafone network. Several users have recently claimed on social media that Vodafone is sharing their personal numbers with other persons. Vodafone hasn’t responded to the claims of these users.

On the other hand, four journalists were suspended from the privately-owned outlet of Youm 7 on claims of their opposition to the transfer of Tiran and Sanafir Red Sea Islands to Saudi Arabia. Salama promised that members of the syndicate will get in touch with the editor-in-chief Khaled Salah to detect the reason behind their suspension.

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