Al Jazeera journalist Mahmoud Hussein has spent 1,400 days in prison under arbitrary and illegal detention by the Egyptian authorities, without trial or conviction.
He was detained on December 23, 2016, while on vacation with his family.
Commenting on Hussein’s incarceration, Al Jazeera Media Network acting director-general Dr Mostefa Souag said: “Mahmoud’s detention, which is in grave violation of both Egyptian and international law, is deplorable. It must come to an end.
“With the high risk of transmission of Covid-19 in crowded prison conditions, we call upon the Egyptian authorities to free all detained journalists and urge the international community to pressure Egypt and all governments to reaffirm the values of press freedom.”
Egypt thus far continues to be “one of the leading violators of press freedom”, Al Jazeera Media Network has said in a statement. Moreover, even under Egyptian law, it is supposedly illegal to hold an individual without charge for more than two years.
“Previously, the Egyptian authorities eluded the law by releasing our colleague Mahmoud on the two-year mark and only to re-arrest him on an additional fictitious charge,” the statement noted.
“Al Jazeera condemns the unlawful detention and refutes all charges against Mahmoud, and calls on the international community, media professionals and human rights advocates to raise awareness and demand the immediate release of Mahmoud Hussein and all other journalists imprisoned around the world,” the network said.
“At Al Jazeera, we stand in solidarity with all our colleagues in the media. We demand that no journalist should be intimidated, persecuted or imprisoned for carrying out their duty; journalism is not a crime.”
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