Sunday, February 8, 2015
This morning Egypt announced that a retrial for detained Al Jazeera English journalists Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed has been set for February 12. Below is a statement CJFE has received from Fahmy's family.
Mohamed never requested that he drops his citizenship. The authorities visited him before the appeal hearing on January 1st. and made a deal with him to renounce it in return for his freedom claiming this was the only way out for him and Peter. It was one of the most difficult decisions he has ever taken that has left him demoralised. Now, the general prosecutor is complicating matters even though both the presidency and the prime minister have expressed their desire to let him go as soon as possible. Yes, we are worried and we have been let down by the Canadian government's conservative approach in the handling of the case. That is also the feeling of the Egyptian officials and public figures sympathising with us who are shocked that the Canadian prime minister had not intervened yet to expedite matters while the Australian most senior official has done an outstanding job in the release of his colleague Peter Greste. Amnesty, Human Rights Watch, CJFE, Canadian media, and Fahmy and his lawyers have all called openly and privately on prime minister Harper to take a stand but he has failed us immensely. We are now doing the leg work ourselves as a family knocking the doors of the prosecutor, foreign ministry and presidency. Amal Clooney our lawyer is well respected here in the Egyptian diplomatic community and will be arriving to Cairo soon. She had planned to fly from LA to Toronto to meet Fahmy upon his release but she hopes they can fly together out of Cairo toward freedom. The trial date on Feb 12th represents our worst nightmare, to have to go through another circus of a retrial.