MEDIA

Media outrage after Le Monde journalist detained in Cairo

The detention and questioning on Tuesday of a French Le Monde journalist in Cairo sparked media outrage. (Photo courtesy: Al Ahram)

The detention and questioning on Tuesday of a French Le Monde journalist in Cairo sparked media outrage.

Alain Gresh, who works as the chief editor of France’s Le Monde Diplomatique, was arrested in downtown Cairo after a woman reportedly overheard him talking about politics in a café.

See also: Egypt releases student arrested over Orwell’s 1984

She screamed “You want to destroy the country,” Gresh told the daily adding that she later went to complain to a police officer.

The policeman arrested Gresh as well as the two female journalists who were with him on their way out asking for their IDs and passports.

All three were detained for an hour and a half before being released.

State security

The incident happened days after an Egyptian student Mohammed Taha, 21, was arrested on suspicions of threatening state security.

Taha, who has now been released, was arrested in front of his university on Sunday after security found writings about a “Muslim caliphate” among his notes, in addition to a copy of George Orwell’s 1984.

The notes allegedly spoke of a “corrupt military regime and its dictatorial reign over the country.”

Social media reaction

The incident sparked debate on social media with some users voicing concern over democracy in Egypt.

One user wrote: “Stupidity of #Egypt police is legendary but not that stupid!” while @Arkim34 sarcastically said in French “Democracy is pretty under Sisi.”

Another user said: “Terrible atmosphere for journalists in almost all of #NorthernAfrica.”
 

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Last Update: Wednesday, 12 November 2014 KSA 14:09 - GMT 11:09
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Media outrage after Le Monde journalist detained in Cairo
Alain Gresh, who works is the chief editor of France’s Le Monde Diplomatique, was arrested in downtown Cairo
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