Archive for August 16th, 2012


Egypt: Muslim Brotherhood Under Attack, Fears for Free Expression

Human Wrongs Watch

By Shahira Amin*

Cairo — The month-long suspension of a privately-owned Egyptian TV channel for “defamation and incitement to violence” has triggered an outcry in Egyptian media circles amid fears of regression in freedom of expression gained after the country’s January 2011 revolution.

Tawfik Okasha

Al-Faraeen was closed down last week as Egyptian authorities threatened to revoke its license for “inflammatory language” used by the station’s presenters.

The channel’s controversial talkshow host and owner Tawfik Okasha is now under investigation by the public prosecutor after a lawsuit was filed against him by Islamists who claimed he had repeatedly “defamed, slandered and incited violence” against them.

During his programme, he aired a video allegedly showing Muslim extremists executing a Christian in Tunisia, and asked “how such people will govern” in an obvious reference to the Muslim Brotherhood.

In June, newly-elected President Mohamed Morsi also filed a lawsuit against Okasha, accusing him of “defamation and slander” after the host devoted an entire episode of his programme to criticising the Muslim Brotherhood and the president.

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