Media specialists, journalists and legal experts call for enhancement of the media coverage after the Egyptian revolution

November 15th, 2011 by Editor

On November 13, 2011, The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR) and the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) held the “Media Performance Enhancement”. The workshop was aimed at reinforcement of the fairness and transparency of the media coverage to the transition era after the Egyptian revolution in addition to cementing the cooperation and integration of both the civil society organizations and media. The participants discussed the fairness and transparency standards of the media coverage.

Mr. Ahmed Abdel Hafez, the vice president of EOHR, stressed on the significance of the role played by media in the transition era. He also stated that the free access to information is one of the main components of the freedom of expression. He called for reconsidering the legislations of journalism; the Egyptian criminal law includes many articles that chain the journalists and decreases the margin of the freedom of expression.

Mahmoud Abdel Fattah, the representative of ANHRI, stated that the workshop is aimed at discussing the ideas of media coverage enhancement in attendance of media specialists, judges and public figures in order to identify the problems and proposed solution on the current media coverage to the political affairs after the revolution.

Mr. Saad Hagras, the editor in chief of Al Alam Al Youm Newspaper, said that the Egyptian media suffers many serious problems related to the media leaders, political, professional, administrative and legislative dimensions. He called for an ideal behavior declaration issued, by the Journalist Syndicate in addition to reviewing the syndicate law, rules and the membership issues. Media is still as it is; nothing changed after the Egyptian revolution. There are many restrictions against issuing new newspapers. 18 articles in the Egyptian laws include sending journalists to prison in connection with publishing charges.

Khalid Al Balshi, the editor in chief of Al Badil News Website, stated that media suffers severe problems even after the Egyptian revolution. He stressed on the integration of media, judiciary and the Egyptian people; judges are not anemies of the Egyptian journalists. He creticised the absence of a law for the access to public information instead of publishing rumors like the news of Mubarak travel outside Egypt after the revolution, which was published on the pages of four different newspapers.

Judge Ahmed Abu Shusha criticized the way of the Egyptian journalist while handling the news about the conflict between lawyers and judges on the judiciary law that lift the protection of the lawyer in the court house; it enables the judge to order arresting the lawyer if he made any legal violation during the court session. He said that the media specialist should know much about the person they talk to; some interviewees have got private intentions and attitudes that do not have any connection to justice in this country. They just express their own ideas disregarding the general good.

During the workshop, EOHR and ANHRI discussed their fourth report on the media coverage on elections, political parties, judiciary and the SCAF in Egypt during October 2011, in order to identify the coverage problems and propose suitable and comprehensive solutions.

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