The Association of Freedom of Thought and Expression (AFTE) has received with great concern the verdict of the Appeal Felony Court in Bulaq Aboul Ela, which states the imprisonment of the journalist Ibrahim Eissa, the Editor in Chief of El Dostour newspaper, for a period of two months. This verdict was
issued in case no. 2396 North Cairo registered with number 12663 Bulaq Aboul Ela. This case is known as the case of the President’s Health.
The verdict was coincidentally issued with the 6th celebration of International Day for the Right to Knowledge. On this day, some institutions honored Journalists for their keenness to deliver information to the public and preserving their rights to know. This verdict was issued amongst general incidents of the president’s retreat to fulfill the promises and commitments that he made during his presidential elections in 2005. During this election, he promised to cancel the imprisonment of journalists; however, since this promise was launched, journalists have been debilitated starting from harassing female journalists in front of the syndicate in May 2005 through the mandatory detention for more than one journalist who work in independent and opposition newspapers.
AFTE renewed its demand for the Egyptian government to fulfill its promises according to the second article of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights which emphasizes the protection of and support to the rights and freedoms recognized therein, including everyone’s right to freedom of expression contained in article 19. This right includes his freedom to seek different forms of information and ideas, receive and transfer to others regardless any limits.