• 15:21
  • Friday ,02 January 2015

Jazeera urges quick release of journalists held in Egypt


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Friday ,02 January 2015

Jazeera urges quick release of journalists held in Egypt

Al-Jazeera called for the swift release of three of its journalists detained in Egypt for more than a year, after the top appeal court on Thursday ordered a retrial.

The Qatar-based television news channel said that prolongation of the custody of its three staffers while legal proceedings dragged on could only do further damage to Egypt's international standing.
Al-Jazeera's acting director general, Mostafa Souag, welcomed the retrial but said the journalists had been "unjustly imprisoned".
"Their arrest was political, the sentencing was political and their being kept in prison is, for us, political," he said on the news channel.
"As a result, we hope a political decision will be taken to release them all, without waiting for a retrial," he said.
Australian Peter Greste, Egyptian-Canadian Mohamed Fahmy and Egyptian Baher Mohamed of the broadcaster's English service have been detained since December 2013 on charges of aiding the party of ousted Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi.
Hopes for the journalists' release have grown.
Egypt's top court ordered a retrial of the three reporters but kept them in custody pending a new hearing.
"The Egyptian authorities have a simple choice - free these men quickly or continue to string this out, all the while continuing this injustice and harming the image of their own country in the eyes of the world," the channel said in a statement on Thursday.
"They should choose the former."