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Writer questioned and released, but warned not to write about military matters without permission

(ANHRI/IFEX) - The Military Prosecutor General decided to release journalist and writer Abd Al Khaliq Farouq on 8 July 2008 after two and a half hours of questioning. However, Farouq was instructed to not address any issues related to the military without permission from the concerned bodies.

Farouq, who was represented by lawyers from the ANHRI Legal Aid Unit and others, was questioned about various articles included in his most recent book, titled "Indictment Claim", such as the article entitled: "The Sin of Article 15 of the Constitution and the Military Control over the Civil Service Apparatus": http://icess.katib.org/node/37

The investigation was apparently undertaken due to a report on Farouq by the state security Investigation Unit, which functions as a political police. ANHRI believes this investigation is indicative of a quantum leap in the security Investigation Unit's role, given that such a report constitutes an incitement to legal actions against a writer and implies that he is guilty of sedition.

"The Egyptian government should have paid more attention to the analysis and thoughts discussed in the book instead of reacting to it with a police mentality, which uses a stick when it comes to dealing with an idea or opinion," said Gamal Eid, ANHRI executive director.

Farouq said that he was shocked to be questioned about the book, which is sold out. The book is a collection of articles that were published during 2007 in several newspapers. Farouq also stated that he intends to publish electronic copies of all of his books, in spite of the harassment of commentators and journalists by the state security apparatus.

The full text of the book in Arabic can be read on Farouq's blog: http://icess.katib.org

Updates the Farouq case: http://www.ifex.org/en/content/view/full/95124

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