Egypt sentences journalists for practising journalism


(Photo: Al-Jazeera)

(Photo: Al-Jazeera)

Once in the Catholic Church persecuted Galileo Galilei for his stands based on scientific discoveries, presumed witches were burned in public, leaders of Templars too, but none expected that great inquisition would be back in 21st century. It is back and on Monday Great Court of Inquisition in Egypt sentenced to seven years of jail three Al-Jazeera journalists for practising journalism. Sentences which were handed to Mohamed Fahmy who’s also Canadian citizen, Australian correspondent Peter Greste and Egyptian producer Baher Mohamed. Mr. Mohamed received an extra three years in prison on separate charges.

These journalists are just pawns in the bigger story which goes between Qatari based multilingual channel and new “democratic” Egyptian government and it’s based on presumption and overall view that Al-Jazeera supports Muslim Brotherhood. This sentences even if Court and state decide to give a clemency and release Mr. Fahmy and his colleagues will remain a darkest stain on the face of Egypt.  Continue reading

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In 2011 worldwide 78 journalists killed, 179 jailed – CPJ reports


SURREY – Committee To Protect Journalists, renewed independent and non-governmental organization devoted to promotion press freedom worldwide by defending the rights of journalists to report the news without fear of reprisal, issued recent two important annual reports. According to CPJ’s report on journalist imprisonment in 2011 number of those put behind bars jumped worldwide and Iran is leader, while Pakistan is a worldwide deadliest nation.  Continue reading

Mubarak’s tyranny on display, Obama urges reforms and democracy


Friday was a great day for world democracy and fight for universal human rights against tyranny and dictatorship often seen as “the best model for stability” in turbulent regions as it is Middle East. Thousands and thousands of protesters gathered on Cairo, Alexandria and Suez streets in call for resignations of Egyptian government and long-term ruler Hosni Mohammad Mubarak, well known dictator and fake “democrat”. The most interesting element of whole story was message sent by US President Obama which was read between the lines of his post-Mubarak speech in the White House.

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Balkan protests started in Albania, could spread to other countries


African North is under pressure for democratic changes, but that “dangerous” syndrome is not exclusive only for Northern Africa. Southern Balkan is also faced with protests against tyranny and undemocratic regime in Tirana, Capital of Albania. Opposition parties and civic society organisations led by Tirana Mayor and leader of major opposition Socialistic party come out on Tirana streets in protest against “unacceptable regime” ruled by Prime Minister, Sali Berisha. Looking into current situation in Balkan region soon or later Albania wouldn’t be alone in this situation. Bosnia and Herzegovina waits almost four months on new government on Federal level, Croatian unemployment could reach 350.000 in near future and this is election year, both countries are faced with rising corruption on the top levels what is making situation much more difficult. Serbia as one of the biggest, but from time to time member of weakest countries club, is fighting with milk and food shortages, gas prices are rising.

 

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Israel seeks regular meeting with Abbas


Benjamin Netanyahu, Barack Obama and Mahmoud Abbas

Benjamin Netanyahu, Barack Obama and Mahmoud Abbas

New round of formal and direct negotiations between Israel and Palestinian Authority will start on next Thursday morning in Washington under sponsorship of Obama administration. Both sides appointed their chief negotiators and American side would be represented by Sen. George Mitchell. Israeli side will be represented by Netanyahu’s close friend and lawyer Yitzak Molcho, on the other side of the table would seat long time negotiations veteran Saeb Erekat man who stands behind several rounds of negotiations and peace agreement. Continue reading

Mohamed El-Baradei accused for plot against Egypt’s regime


Mohamed El-Baradei

Mohamed El-Baradei

Former IAEA director, Nobel Prize laureate and leader of movement for political reform in Egypt Mohamed El-Baradei are accused in local media for plot against President Mubarak’s regime. Since he left IAEA director position Mr. El-Baradei is leading movement for political reform in Egypt promoting his idea of restoration of democracy in Egypt. In April Mr. El-Baradei visited US where he was speaking with Egyptian Americans in Harward University, he also use this chance to speak for American media about current situation in Egypt and to promote his ideas for better future in democracy.

Mohamed Abul-Ghar, Cairo University professor and El-Baradei’s aid, in his statement to Al-Ahram Weekly says that El-Baradei explained to Egyptian Americans seven objectives set by his National Assosiation for Change whom are important for better future. “These include amending the constitution, eliminating state of emergency, abolishing military tribunals, releasing political prisoners, ensuring the separation of powers, improving Egypt’s record on human rights and issuing a unified law for regulating places of worship”, Abul-Ghar told to Al-Ahram Weekly. The most controversial comment given by El-Baradei is connected to the Muslim Brotherhood were his said that “the Brothers” should be allowed to participate in political life as long as they abide by democracy and rules of democracy. NDP members described Mr. El-Baradei as revolution man who attacks those one who take a role in Revolution in 1952 when is established current regime and dissolved early established democracy. According to his own argues he is against reserved quota of seats in parliament devoted to workers and farmers who helped regime to get power in July of 1952.

“The US administration has no excuse for condemning the record of human rights violations in the world keeping a blind eye on what happens in Egypt”, Mr. El-Baradei said to Egyptian Americans in Harward University. Mr. El-Baradei was guest on CNN’s programme “The Power of Interview” hosted by Christian Amanpour where he delivered many answers about his possible candidacy for Egyptian presidency, incumbent President Mubarak and current state of Egypt. “It is not my primary goal to run for presidency, but it is to see my country, Egypt, a country where I grew up, making a genuine shift towards democracy”, said Mr. El-Baradei to CNN. In case of President Mubarak, Mr. El-Baradei, said: “We have a  president who has been in power for 30 years and we have a martial law for almost 30 years and this speaks volumes for the lack of democracy in Egypt. It is only handful of people who have the right to run for presidency and so democracy is no longer part of Egyptian lifestyle for over 50 years.”

NDP’s secretary Ahmed Ezz said to CNN in same programme that Mr. El-Baradei is welcomed in political life of Egypt but that he must to be candidate for one of 24 currently registered parties as it is stated in countries constitution. He also added that Mr. El-Baradei hesitates to do that and he by himself chooses to run his presidential campaign as independent candidate. In his parliamentary speech Mr. Ezz, according to Al-Ahram’s report, strongly “attacked those who want to implement a style of American democracy based on staging street demonstrations and flirting with religious movements.” This in particular means that current Egyptian government is strongly against any changes towards democracy based on their enormous power and privileges devoted to them by Mubarak constitution. Statements given by Mubarak’s followers are nothing else but rhetoric of dictatorship regime blind followers who are afraid of change and possible transfer of power from their hands on people.

If Mr. El-Baradei continues with his campaign for changes in Egypt with this tone and clear attacks on Mubarak’s regime his Egyptian future probably would be in question. His only hope can be strong movement which will include all part of society secured and encouraged by strong movement organization and leadership around Mr. El-Baradei. Big part in his success in fight for better Egypt probably will play American and international public and pressure on Mubarak’s regime to improve human rights in this African country. He was successful director of IAEA, we will see if he would be successful in his fight for his own country.