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Amnesty International calls on Egypt to release retired journalist

March 22, 2022 at 2:22 pm

Tawfik Ghanem, a retired journalist [free_ghanem/Twitter]

Amnesty International, yesterday, called on the Egyptian President, Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, to release the retired journalist, Tawfik Ghanem, who has been detained since May 2021.

“Free 66 year-old journalist Tawfik Ghanem NOW,” Amnesty said on Twitter, noting that he had spent “300 days unjustly behind bars for his media work.”

Freedom of press in Egypt - Cartoon [Latuff/MiddleEastMonitor]

Freedom of press in Egypt – Cartoon [Latuff/MiddleEastMonitor]

The rights organisation pointed out that Ghanem was denied “adequate healthcare for his multiple health problems”, adding that he was held in “horrid conditions”.

Ghanem was arrested on 21 May 2021 by the Egyptian security forces after they had raided his home in the west of the capital city of Cairo. He was later placed in pre-trial detention by the state security prosecution for “belonging to a terrorist group”.

His detention was renewed several times, the last of which was on 19 March, when a court extended his confinement for 45 days.

Ghanem, a veteran journalist who retired in 2015, suffers from diabetes and other diseases, according to previous statements by his family. He requires medication on a daily basis.

He has held multiple journalistic posts over a span of more than 30 years, most notably the presidency of the Media International Foundation, which ran the website. He has also been the Director of the regional office of the Turkish Anadolu Agency in Egypt until 2015.

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