EOHR condemns the assault on the staff of Sky News channel and the detention of Al Jazeera correspondent

July 16th, 2013 by Editor

EOHR strongly condemns the assault led by supporters of the ousted President Mohamed Morsi on the employees of Sky News channel covering the demonstration at Ramses on July 15, 2013. EOHR also denounces the detention of Al Jazeera correspondent in Azbakeya police station, which is considered to be a flagrant violation of freedom of opinion and expression and of the right to exchange information.

The supporters of the former President Mohamed Morsi attacked the team of Sky News channel at Ramses square and they were close to killing the channel staff and destroying the team’s car.

Violence erupted as the team heard someone confirming to the crowd that they belong to Sky News channel, which they consider to be a channel hostile to the Muslim Brotherhood and to Morsi. Dozens gathered around the car and tried to overturn it, but the team managed to escape with difficulty.

Correspondent of Al Jazeera Egypt Live channel, Mohamed Badr, was arrested and put in custody at Azbakeya police station, while covering the clashes between supporters of the ousted President and the security forces at Ramses square.

EOHR believes that the media plays a vital role in establishing the rules and the foundations of democracy and good governance, then media teams shall not in any way be harmed or restrained. An appropriate environment must be provided for the media work to achieve its fundamental mission – whether to transmit different opinions or to raise public awareness of their fundamental rights and duties.

EOHR calls for committing to peaceful demonstrations and keeping distance from violence in order to preserve the human right to life and to protect public properties.

Mr. Hafez Abu Seada, the head of EOHR, criticized the assaults on the media, platforms ensuring the freedom of opinion and expression and revealing the facts to the public. It shall not suffer any prejudice; an atmosphere of freedom and protection should be provided to the staff members, journalists and all media workers.

EOHR demands an immediate and urgent investigation on the assault suffered by the Sky News team, as well as on the detention of the Al Jazeera correspondent, in order to quickly bring the perpetrators into justice and present the results to the public opinion. Formal guarantees shall be also provided for the protection of media from any attempt to undermine it.  



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