Jun 24, 2014

In isolated Egypt, foreigners get a taste of local justice

There has been international condemnation of Peter Greste's seven-year sentence handed down by an Egyptian judge, but that hasn't stopped the United States from sending millions of dollars in military aid.

Myriam Robin — Media Reporter

Myriam Robin

Media Reporter

It’s almost impossible to imagine Egypt under Hosni Mubarak handing down a politically motivated seven-year jail sentence to an Australian-Latvian journalist.

Much has changed in Egypt since 2011, and in the protracted period of instability that followed, Egypt’s ties with the world have weakened. Tourism, in 2011 responsible for 11% of Egypt’s GDP, has dramatically fallen. Egypt, historically sensitive to global criticism because of its impact on tourism, is far less so now.

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8 thoughts on “In isolated Egypt, foreigners get a taste of local justice

  1. AR

    The Egyptian military is a wholly owned, financed, equipped and trained subsidiary of the Hegemon. Without its lethal toys & vast largesse the squaddies would be keeping their boots loosely laced so that they can be stepped out when they run away, asap, when conditions change.
    Since the Sadat “Piece” Pact, Egypt’s population has more than doubled (to over 80M)which is only possible because of virtually free wheat from US surpluses and dumped excess fro, the EU grain mountain (though increasing quantities of the latter are going to the Africa former colonies & basket cases),
    Even the Gift of the Nile cannot support that number of people and, just for added piquancy, check the Egyptian age pyramid.
    If that doesn’t scare the bejasus out of you, I’d like an ounce of whatever you’re smoking.

  2. klewso

    What’s changed?
    They were good enough to do the dirty work of renditioning and torture for the US and it’s allies including us?

  3. Jill Baird

    He’s not Australian-Dutch; I think his family is from Latvia.

  4. Myriam Robin

    Thanks Jill – perils of writing too quickly. Corrected.

  5. Andybob

    A very sad example of the Streisand effect. The prosecution and verdict have done more to damage Egypt’s reputation than any report by Al-Jazeera.

  6. green-orange

    @”It’s also seen a death sentence handed down to 182 alleged Muslim Brotherhood members, as well as the Muslim Brotherhood leader.”

    They went out with the express purpose of killing police, which previous demonstrations had done. If you participate in murder, even without actually killing anyone, you are guilty of murder.

    @”Defendants are held in a cage during the trial, which tells you all you need to know about the presumption of innocence.”

    You mean like the dock ? Yup, exactly like the dock.

    @”The judge has almost absolute control over both the presentation of evidence and the verdict — there are no juries.”

    Just like Australian judges then. There are no juries in Magistrates court, nor are you guaranteed the right to one in higher courts.

    @”According to media reports relying on interviews with key regime figures, Egyptian police intended to arrest Al Jazeera Arabic journalists, rather than those working for Al Jazeera English.”

    Greste interviewed the MB. This is not debatable. Interviewing terrorist organisations is a criminal offence in Egypt – just like it is in Australia.
    The “irrelevant” evidence that the western media so ridiculously reported on was _character_ evidence designed to further show that he not merely interviewed but also _supported_ the MB, which was the charge.

  7. AR

    Green-Orange – thanks for a different view, always nice to know how they’re ‘thinking’ on Planet Cloaca Cephalus.

  8. AR

    G-O, go on, tell us, you are the long lost, Reluctantly Spotted MJPR, aren’t you?

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