SUDAN WATCH: Egypt arrests another blog critic - Bloggers are at the centre of Egyptian political activism

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Egypt arrests another blog critic - Bloggers are at the centre of Egyptian political activism

Nov 20 2006 BBC report Egypt arrests another blog critic [hat tip Miss Mabrouk of Egypt]:
Police in Cairo have detained a blogger whose posts have been critical of the Egyptian government.

Rami Siyam, who blogs under the name of Ayyoub, was detained along with three friends after leaving the house of a fellow blogger late at night.

No reasons have been given for Mr Siyam's detention. The other friends were released after being questioned.

Human rights groups have accused Egypt of eroding freedom of speech by arresting several bloggers recently.

BBC Arab Affairs analyst Magdi Abdelhadi says blogging in Egypt is closely associated with political activism in a culture where democratic freedoms are severely restricted.

In recent weeks, bloggers have been exposing what they say was the sexual harassment of women at night in downtown Cairo in full view of police who did not intervene.

Mr Siyam's host on Saturday night, Muhammad Sharqawi, was detained for several weeks earlier this year.

The most recently detained blogger, Abdel Kareem Nabil, was detained in Alexandria on 6 November and was charged with disrupting public order, inciting religious hatred and defaming the president.

Amnesty International says Mr Amer appeared to have been detained for expressing critical views about Islam and Egypt's al-Azhar religious authorities.
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Egypt detains blogger in random security check

Nov 19 2006 Reuters report [via Miss Mabrouk of Egypt] - excerpt:
Egyptian police detained an opposition blogger in a chance security check on Sunday, a human rights group said.

Blogger Rami Siyam, who runs, was detained with three other bloggers leaving a friend's house in downtown Cairo around dawn, said Gamal Eid, director of the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information.
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Blogger Kareem Arrested Again

Via Miss Mabrouk of Egypt - Big Pharaoh says "I am starting to become very worried about internet freedom of speech in Egypt especially after the state knew how powerful blogs can be after they exposed the mass sexual harassment incident in downtown Cairo."


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