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article imageSenator John McCain condemns Egypt's imprisonment of journalists

By Ken Hanly     Jan 24, 2014 in World
Cairo - United States Republican Senator John McCain has condemned the Egyptian government's imprisonment of five Al Jazeera journalists. He said that their detention is "a clear violation" of their human rights and of freedom of the press.
On Friday (January 24) McCain said to Al Jazeera: "Al Jazeera has been chronicling events in Egypt, probably more intensively than any other world network. For the Egyptian government to keep them in prison, I think, is another indicator that this military government, and that's really what it is, is not keeping with the standards of international behaviour that we would expect."
McCain himself is from a military background, but he has nevertheless been much more blunt and forthright in his criticism of the military-backed Egyptian government than most of his Republican colleagues or even President Obama. Unlike Obama, McCain called the overthrow of Morsi a coup, much to the annoyance of the Egyptians.
Three of the imprisoned journalists are Al Jazeera English staff. Baher Mohamed is a producer as is Mohammed Fahmy and Peter Greste is a correspondent. All are accused of spreading lies that harmed the state and also of joing a terrorist group. The three have been held since December 29 last year. Two other Al Jazeera journalists from other channels are also being held and have been for five months now . Al Jazeera denies al l the allegations against their staff.
McCain did not mince his words: "My message to the Egyptian government, and I know these people, is and has been: if you want to be part of the community of nations and have our cooperation and assistance, then you cannot engage in practices such as the arbitrary imprisonment of members of the media,"McCain joins journalists the world over and groups such as the Committee to Protect Journalists, Reporters Without Borders and the International News Safety Institute in calling for the release of the imprisoned Al Jazeera staff but so far the government has paid no attention.
More about John McCain, Egypt's imprisonment of journalists, egyptian repression
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