5 July 2012

Egypt: Sabahi Announces Solidarity With Raged Journalists

Ex-presidential contender Hamdeen Sabahi announced his solidarity with journalists opposing the Shura Council's decision in regards to appointing heads of state newspapers.

"I announce my solidarity with fellow journalists against the Shura Council decision on state newspapers. I call for the decision to be put off until the constitution settles the status of the Shura Council", Sabahi posted on Twitter.

Egypt's Shura Council (upper house) decided on a group of standards to elect new editors-in-chiefs for state newspapers.

The criteria approved by the Shura Council require possessing administrative and professional competence, never having been involved in cases of corruption and presenting a portfolio that sums up experience, vision and a curriculum vitae. An applicant must have never worked as a media consultant for a government official, businessman, company or local/international body.

Sabahi added, "It is time to lift the state's grip on state newspapers. The current persistence to apply the Shura Council's decision implies the extent of attempting to control state newspapers."

Journalists organized protests upon the issuing of the decision where Gamal Fahmy, member of the Journalists Syndicate, said that the majority of the Shura Council practice the same policies conducted under the Sadat and Mubarak era, which is "using the council to strip state newspapers off their independence".

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