World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Former hostages call on Egypt to release Al Jazeera Staff

Former hostages call on Egypt to release Al Jazeera Staff

- Terry Waite and BBC Journalist Alan Johnston speak out in support of detained Al Jazeera staff

- Amnesty International pledges to continue campaign as ‘journalism is on trial’

Doha - 20th June: Former hostages Terry Waite and BBC correspondent Alan Johnston were joined by Amnesty's International Egypt expert Nicholas Piachaud at the Frontline Club in London to call on Egypt to release Al Jazeera journalists Peter Greste, Baher Mohammed and Mohammed Fahmy ahead of the announcement of the verdict on their case which is due on Monday 23 June.

Terry Waite who was held captive for over 1,700 days in Lebanon after attempting to negotiate the release of other prisoners in the 1980s said: "Egyptian authorities would do themselves a great credit if they release the Al Jazeera three, as this is a chance for Egypt to start a new future if it is going ‘to restore credibility."

BBC journalist Alan Johnston who was kidnapped in Gaza City in 2007 and held for 114 days, said how a worldwide campaign had helped in being freed, the campaign to help release the Al Jazeera three has raised awareness but also highlighted "the wider issue of journalists being incarcerated for doing their jobs".

He further added "Journalists need protection as it is their job to expose corruption and wrongdoing round the world."

Amnesty International's Nicholas Piachaud pledged his organisation will continute the campaign because "journalism is on trial here."

He further added that "the trial of Al Jazeera's journalists has sent a clear message to both the international and domestic media that Egypt does not tolerate dissent, but if the three journalists are not released then Egypt's constitution is not worth the paper it is written on."

Al Jazeera Arabic correspondent Abdullah Elshamy was released this week after being detained without charge since August 2013. Elshamy was freed on medical grounds after spending five months on a hunger strike.

Elshamy upon release said: " I call on everyone to remember my colleagues Peter, Mohammed and Baher, and that they soon will be released and reunited with their families."

Calls for the release of all Al Jazeera staff have been made from the White House, the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the European Union. Similarly public calls of support for the #FreeAJStaff campaign have been made from prominent media personalities with over 60,000 people supporting the #FreeAJStaff campaign which has had over 1.2 billion impressions on Twitter.

Various media freedom and human rights groups have also issued statements ranging from the Committee to Protect Journalists, the International Press Institute, Amnesty International and The Foreign Correspondents Association of East Africa.


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Haiti: $5 Million To Kick-Start Aid In Wake Of Hurricane Matthew

UN emergency fund allocates $5 million to kick-start assistance in wake of Hurricane Matthew More>>


Not Helen Clark: António Guterres Favourite For Next UN Secretary-General

Former Portuguese Prime Minister António Guterres has emerged as the clear favourite to become the next United Nations Secretary-General following the sixth secret ballot held today by the UN Security Council, which is expected to take a formal decision tomorrow and forward Mr. Guterres’ name to the 193-Member General Assembly for final confirmation. More>>


Preliminary Results: MH17 Investigation Report

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is convinced of having obtained irrefutable evidence to establish that on 17 July 2014, flight MH-17 was shot down by a BUK missile from the 9M38-series. According to the JIT there is also evidence identifying the launch location that involves an agricultural field near Pervomaiskyi which, at the time, was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. More>>


At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news