Urgent meeting at Journalists Syndicate to tackle prison sentence against former chief, others

The Journalists Syndicate held on Sunday an urgent meeting to mull the trade union and legal measures that should be taken after issuance of the suspended one-year sentence against former Syndicate Chief Yehia Qallash; syndicate secretary Gamal abdel Rehim; and former Head of the Freedoms Committee at the syndicate Khaled el-Balshy.

The council declared its support for the three figures with respect to the judicial verdicts. Meanwhile, it expressed concerns over the court handing them this sentence, urging the judiciary to maintains the spirit of the law in regards to journalism cases.

Qasr al-Nil Misdemeanor Appellant Court on Saturday sentenced journalist unionists to lenient punishments, overruling earlier harsh verdict against them for harboring colleagues wanted by the law and spreading false news.

Qallash, Abdel Rahim and Balshy have been sentenced to two years in prison and fined LE10,000 each in November, for harboring Amr Badr (now member of the syndicate’s board) and Mahmoud al-Sakka.

Saturday's ruling eased the sentences to one year of prison for each, and granted a stay of execution by the court.


Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm


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