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Al Jazeera journalists Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed released on bail

Al-Jazeera English producer Baher Mohamed, left, Canadian-Egyptian acting Cairo bureau chief Mohammed Fahmy
Al-Jazeera English producer Baher Mohamed, left, Canadian-Egyptian acting Cairo bureau chief Mohammed Fahmy

AP Photo/Heba Elkholy, El Shorouk, File

This statement was originally published on cjfe.org on 12 February 2015.

Canadian Journalists for Free Expression (CJFE) was heartened by this morning's announcement that an Egyptian court has ordered imprisoned journalists Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed to be released on bail pending the resumption of their retrial.

However, CJFE further calls for the Egyptian government to drop all charges against the two journalists and ensure their unconditional freedom. After spending over 400 days in prison, the end to their imprisonment is long overdue, as is their reunion with their families.

The journalists' release on bail closely follows the release of their Australian colleague Peter Greste, who was deported to Australia on February 1. The retrial of Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed will resume February 23.

“We are heartened knowing that the two journalists will soon be able to be reunited with their families,” says CJFE Executive Director Tom Henheffer. “However, we continue to call for the charges against these journalists to be dropped unconditionally and for them to walk free.”

While CJFE celebrates the journalists' release until their retrial resumes, the very idea of them being further prosecuted on these charges is unacceptable. We also cannot forget the more than 50 other journalists who continue to be unjustly detained in Egypt, many without charge.

CJFE urges the Canadian government to continue to advocate for Mohamed Fahmy's release at the highest levels of the Egyptian government. Until both journalists are free and all charges against them are dropped, the campaign to #FreeAJstaff must continue.

For more information about the detention of Mohamed Fahmy, Peter Greste and Baher Mohamed, and the #FreeAJstaff campaign, visit cjfe.org/freeajstaff.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
What other IFEX members are saying
  • Egypt: Al Jazeera journalists released on bail

    “We are extremely pleased to hear that Baher Mohamed and Mohamed Fahmy have been released, but disappointed to hear the charges against them have not been dropped. Their arrests and sentences, and that of other less-known journalists, are part of a widespread crackdown on freedom of expression in the country.

  • IFJ welcomes release on bail of Al Jazeera journalists in Egypt

    "Any democratic society cannot resort to legal intimidation to suppress independent reporting."

  • IPI welcomes Egypt’s release of Al Jazeera journalists

    “We hope that the court will now acquit them and end this case. Egypt’s government has an obligation to protect journalists engaged in journalism from arbitrary arrest and detention. We urge the government to ensure that no journalists are imprisoned as a result of their work, and we note that media freedom will always be under threat unless respect for fundamental human rights and due process is guaranteed.”



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