Human Rights Commissioner Strässer On the Detention of Journalists in Egypt [press release]

Christoph Straumlsser, the Federal Government Commissioner for Human Rights Policy and Humanitarian Aid, issued the following statement today (19 May 2014) on the detention of journalists in Egypt:


I am deeply concerned about the health of detained Egyptian journalist Abdullah Elshamy, who has been on hunger strike for four months and who was placed in solitary confinement on 12 May 2014. Mr Elshamy has been in custody since August 2013 and to date no charges have been brought against him. At the same time numerous other journalists are being detained in Egypt or are being taken to court for their reporting activities.

I call on the Egyptian Government to respect the right to freedom of expression as guaranteed by the constitution. The Egyptian authorities must also ensure that imprisonment, prison conditions and trial procedure consistently adhere to the human rights standards which Egypt has pledged to the international community to uphold.

This also applies to the upcoming presidential elections on 26 and 27 May. Allowing the media to report freely before, during and after the elections as well as enabling civil society to engage with this process are vital elements of this.

Every Egyptian Government has a duty towards its citizens to protect human rights and fundamental freedoms and to guarantee the rule of law.

SOURCE Federal Foreign Office, Federal Republic of Germany

Source : PR Newswire