Egyptian blogger known as “Mohamed Oxygen” finally released
Reporters Without Borders (RSF) welcomes yesterday’s release of Mohamed Ibrahim Radwan, a blogger also known as “Mohamed Oxygen” who had been held since April 2018 for “disseminating false news.” But RSF points out that many other journalists are still imprisoned in Egypt.
A court ordered Radwan’s release on 22 July but he had to wait another nine days until the authorities finally released him from Tora prison last night and he remains under judicial control. His lawyer said he will have report to a police station twice a week and spend two hours there each time, answering questions and accounting for his activities.
“Mohamed Oxygen’s release ends more than a year of arbitrary detention for this blogger, but it must not distract from the fact that the only one name has been removed from the long list of journalists detained in Egypt,” RSF’s Middle East desk said. “A journalist has been freed, but others still await release and others continue to be arrested.”
As in Mohamed Oxygen’s case, a court has approved the release of Shorouq Amjad, a photographer held since April 2018, but he is still waiting to be freed. At the same time, a court has rescinded an order for the release of Badr Mohammed Badr, a freelance journalist held since March 2017. Instead his detention has been extended yet again.
Worse still, the release of Mahmoud Hussein, an Al Jazeera journalist detained since December 2016, was rescinded at the last moment at the end of May on the grounds that he was to be the subject of a new investigation.
Egypt is ranked 163rd out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2019 World Press Freedom Index.