Court orders detention of Egyptian TV anchor in ‘child abduction’ case

Reham Saeed has been detained for allegedly ‘inciting the kidnapping of two children.’ (Courtesy Al-Nahar TV)
Updated 19 February 2018

Court orders detention of Egyptian TV anchor in ‘child abduction’ case

CAIRO: Egypt’s Public Prosecution on Monday ordered the detention of controversial TV host Reham Saeed for her alleged “incitement” of a “child abduction” case as part of a program on the topic, it has been reported.
Saeed will be detained for four days pending investigations, along with her program’s producers and editors, on charges of “inciting the kidnapping of two children to prepare an episode of the program,” newspaper reports said.
The prosecution had previously ordered the detention of the program’s producer and photographer for 15 days in relation to the case.
Saeed has been off air for the past few weeks after an episode on child kidnapping in Egypt landed her in hot water.
It is reported that a producer in her team got in touch with a gang that kidnaps children and puts them for sale. Allegedly pretending to be a customer for the purpose of the episode, the producer contacted the gang and asked if she could purchase “two children for 300,000 Egyptian pounds,” to which the gang agreed.
On the day the gang decided to hand over the children, the producer said authorities were informed of the matter, and knew the time and location of where the children were going to be exchanged.
It is reported that police had raided the location, arrested the kidnappers and freed the children.
But the “Sabaya El-Khair” program team were later accused by the kidnapers of “inciting the abduction of the children” by offering the money.
Saeed reportedly faces three charges: The assistance and incitement to kidnap children; broadcasting false news that could disturb social peace; and the trafficking of children, according to Al-Masry El-Youm.
Judicial sources reportedly said that Saeed denied knowing about the process of the alleged child abductions, and that she simply presents the show and discusses what the editor prepares for her.
Saeed not only denies the allegations, but says her program has worked on “aiding the children of Egypt” and would never take part in a kidnapping.
Saeed was previously suspended in 2016 when she hosted a sexual harassment victim on air and allegedly blamed her “inappropriate clothing” as reason for the assault.

Fake News Watch: Beware! Lebanon’s water is polluted with … water

Updated 26 March 2019

Fake News Watch: Beware! Lebanon’s water is polluted with … water

  • A weekly round-up of bogus reports and phony facts in the mainstream and social media.

1 Fears flow over dihydrogen monoxide — aka “water” 

A deadly pollutant in Lebanon’s spring waters has been detected, according to social media rumors.

But the toxin in question — the scary-sounding “dihydrogen monoxide” — is in fact … water.

The chemical term is technically correct, though rarely used in common conversation, and has often been used in parodies, or to evoke fear in the minds of people.

Such was the case in the Middle East recently, after the South Lebanon Water Establishment recently moved to deny social-media rumors claiming spring waters are polluted with the compound.

“Some are circulating on social media a report attributed to the establishment saying that spring waters are polluted with dihydrogen monoxide — which is another unfamiliar chemical name for water,” the organization was quoted as saying by Lebanese media.

“The establishment denies what is being circulated regarding the alleged pollution or its claimed consequences,” it said in a statement quoted by An-Nahar newspaper. 

It described the rumors as a “silly joke” that will “not pass and will be prosecuted lawfully.”


2 France denies suspending visas for Algerians 

The French Embassy in Algeria has denied reports claiming that visa applications for Algerian citizens have been suspended in Algiers.

A statement by the embassy said: “Recently, false and strange information has been circulated, which the consul general of France in Algeria has completely denied.”

The statement, cited by Al-Ahram newspaper, described the reports as “false allegations,” adding that consulates across Algeria have not suspended issuing visas. 


3 Truth about Egypt student ‘disappearance’

A deputy head at a branch of Azhar University in Egypt has denied rumors claiming that a female student at the college has disappeared.

Osama Abdel Raouf said in statements quoted by Youm7 newspaper that they have contacted the college student’s family and that they confirmed she did not disappear. 

He added: “All the names and numbers of female students on campus have been reviewed and no absence cases have been registered.”

Abdel Raouf warned students of engaging in circulating such rumors, saying that those who will do so will be “immediately dismissed” from campus.