CJFE petition to Egypt’s el-Sisi calls for release of Al Jazeera English staff

Tuesday, July 15, 2014
July 16 marks 200 days in prison for the detained journalists
Toronto, ON—Canadian Journalists for Free Expression (CJFE) will send a petition to Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi tomorrow, calling for the immediate release of imprisoned Al Jazeera journalists Mohamed Fahmy, Peter Greste and Baher Mohamed. July 16 will be the 200th day in prison for these three journalists unjustly detained in Egypt. CJFE’s petition will close at 1pm EDT on July 16, making this the last opportunity for supporters to lend their voice to the international call. To date, the petition has garnered over 10,000 signatures from supporters around the world. CJFE asks Canadians to take action in this last 24 hours by signing the petition and sharing it on social media using the #FreeAJstaff hashtag. The petition can be found at: cjfe.org/aljazeera Background on the journalists’ detention Mohamed Fahmy (Canadian-Egyptian), Peter Greste (Australian) and Baher Mohamed (Egyptian) were arrested on December 29, 2013, and later charged with a variety of spurious terrorism-related offenses. On June 23, 2014—following a trial that was internationally condemned as illegitimate—the journalists were convicted of aiding the Muslim Brotherhood and spreading false news. Greste and Fahmy were sentenced to seven years in prison, while Mohamed received 10 years. This case serves as a chilling example to all journalists of their potential fate if they attempt to conduct objective reporting in Egypt. CJFE vehemently condemns the unjust detention of these journalists, and continues to advocate for their immediate and unconditional release. About CJFE CJFE monitors, defends and reports on free expression and access to information in Canada and abroad. Rooted in the field of journalism, we promote a free media as essential to a fair and open society. CJFE boldly champions the free expression rights of all people, and encourages and supports individuals and groups in the protection of their own and others' free expression rights. cjfe.org - 30 - For more information and to request interviews, please contact: Tom Henheffer Executive Director, Canadian Journalists for Free Expression 647-992-4630 thenheffer@cjfe.org

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