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A Cairo court has sentenced 6 people to death, including two Al Jazeera journalists. The two are news producer Alaa Omar Mohammed Sablan and news editor Ibrahim Mohammed Helal – and were sentenced to death in absentia along with Asmaa al-Khateib, who worked for Rassd, a media network alleged to have links to former Egyptian president Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood organisation.
Al Jazeera immediately condemned the verdicts, saying they were part of a “ruthless” campaign against freedom of expression, calling on the wider international community to show solidarity with the journalists. “This sentence is only one of many politicised sentences that target Al Jazeera and its employees,” said the network’s acting director, Mostefa Souag, adding: “They are illogical convictions and legally baseless.”
Three other defendants sentenced to death on June 18th are TV documentary producer Ahmed Afify, EgyptAir cabin crew member Mohammed Keilany and academic Ahmed Ismail.