London, Sep 19, 2017
Arab Media Freedom Monitor “Ikshef” condemns the verdict issued by Cairo Criminal Court on Monday September 18, 2017 to life imprisonment for the media professional Sharif Mansour in Al-Watan channel in the case known as Besieging Al-Fateh Mosque, which occurred on August 16, 2013. Mansour, who was working for Misr 25 TV channel, was covering the incident and contacting TV channels from there at the time, which embarrassed the security services that punished him by including him in the case, and then issued this ruling against him.
Ikshef asserts that this harsh sentence against an Egyptian media professional for practicing his work is part of the general conduct of the Egyptian authorities following the coup of July 3rd, 2013 to suppress press freedom, stifle any opposition or independent voices and attempt to conceal information from citizens by criminalizing the publication of any reports contrary to the official version of events.
The verdict came two days after the Court of Cassation issued a ruling to upheld the death sentence against a media professional working with Qatar’s Al-Jazeera satellite channel in the context of the political crisis between Egypt and Qatar. It also follows the issuance of judicial decisions to seize properties of some Egyptian private media institutions, and including their owners in terror lists, as well as including other journalists in those lists.