GENEVA — The UN human rights office is calling on Egyptian authorities to release a prominent blogger and others imprisoned for exercising free speech.
The military trial and jailing of blogger Alaa Abd El Fattah and a hunger strike by his mother have gained wide publicity at home and abroad.
Rupert Colville, a spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, said Egypt must "guarantee full respect for the freedom of expression" nine months after leader Hosni Mubarak's ouster.
He told reporters Friday in Geneva that his agency is "concerned about what appears to be a diminishing public space for freedom of expression and association" in Egypt. He also said the agency was disappointed that its calls for Egypt repeal its emergency rules and end military trials of civilians have been ignored.