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Issues of two newspapers confiscated in Egypt following article on Lebanese singer's murder

Lebanese singer Suzanne Tamim.

Security service agents in Egypt recently confiscated copies of the independent newspapers Al-Dustour and Al Badil from stores, following the newspapers' publication of a story about an Egyptian businessman's connection to the murder of the well-known Lebanese singer Suzanne Tamim in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) has reported.

The seizure of the newspapers from markets by security agents is a crime that requires investigation. It cannot be justified by rumours about a decision of the Prosecutor-General to ban the article or the newspapers. A newspaper cannot be confiscated in a state that respects press freedom and right to circulate information, without notifying the concerned newspaper in advance and obtaining a court order forbidding the publication of the article.

ANHRI has inquired as to whether there is in fact any court resolution that prohibits the publication of the article in question that appeared in Al-Dustour and Al Badil newspapers. The editor in chief of Ad-Dustour, Ibrahim Mansur, as well as the editorial manager of Al Badil, Khalid Al Balshi, both denied receiving any official decision concerning a publication ban, or even notification of a hearing to discuss the possibility of such a ruling.

ANHRI noted that the confiscation of two daily newspapers, without any ruling banning their publication raised, once again, the question about the right to circulate information and the need for a law to oblige the government and newspapers to respect certain norms, rather that leaving decisions about publications to the security apparatus.

Date posted: August 12, 2008 Last modified: May 23, 2018 Total views: 585