By: Menna Mourad
The National Committee for Defending Freedom of Expression (NCDFE) held a news conference on Sunday night condemning attacks targeting journalists and calling for solidarity from local and international human rights organisations.
Committee spokesperson Yehia Qallash gave a statement condemning the attacks on journalists staged by “Muslim Brotherhood militias” that took place in front of the Brotherhood headquarters in Moqattam and called for a sit-in to be staged at the Press Syndicate on Wednesday.
Qallash reached out to local NGOs and international rights groups such as the UNHCR and Reporters Without Borders, among others, for solidarity in matters of freedom of expression and freedom of the press. He also expressed the committee’s solidarity with the Press Syndicate on current and future actions including its report to the Prosecutor General against Mohamed Badie, the Supreme Guide of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, and his deputy.
The Association for Freedom of Thought and Expression expressed in a press release their condemnation of what they deemed escalating attacks directed towards journalists, calling for investigations into Brotherhood members whom were involved in such attacks.
The association also expressed their demand for the safety of journalists asking the government to abide by the international treaties to which Egypt is a signatory, that guarantee journalists’ protection.
Qallash claims that the attacks on journalists come as a result of criticisms of the media by the presidency and Brotherhood officials. He added that the prosecutor general had failed to take action in crimes such as Al Hussainy Abu Deif’s assassination and attacks on the Al Wafd and Al Watan newspapers.
NCDFE called for the establishment of an independent committee with the aim of liberating the media, ensuring Egyptian citizens the ability to access an objective and independent press.