President of the Journalists Syndicate Abdel Mohasen Salama said there are no journalists detained in Egypt due to a publishing case, and that the syndicate stands behind those detained for other reasons. He added that negotiations with the General Prosecutor are underway for journalists to undergo an internal investigation by the syndicate before reaching court.
Salama stressed that the country is currently in a delicate situation that demands the cooperation of all, and that President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has been making an effort to improve the country, therefore different institutions should work together. He added that the relation between the state and the Journalists’ Syndicate has never been stronger.
Salama also added that he does not spare any efforts in improving journalists’ social status, saying that the syndicate has increased their pensions. He also promised a solution for the Party Newspapers that have been unpublished for more that 15 years.
Salama’s statements came during an Alexandria conference organized by the syndicate, which was attended by Alexandria Governor Mohamed Sultan, head of journalists in Alexandria Rizk al-Tarabishi, as well as several presidents of sports clubs.
The announcement comes after years of backlash regarding the freedom of press in Egypt. In 2016, the head of Egyptian Press Syndicate was arrested, in what Amnesty International called “an unprecedented crackdown” on media in Egypt.
It also comes at a time that Egypt has blocked access to dozens of websites, in addition to dismissing reports from international organizations and media groups, including the Amnesty report saying “dozens of news websites [were] blocked as Egypt ramps up digital censorship.”
The report says that Egypt has shifted its attention to digital media blocking over 40 websites.