Journalist, photographer detained for filming report on tram in Egypt

File photo for Alexandria tram, Egypt. (AFP)
Updated 03 March 2018
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Journalist, photographer detained for filming report on tram in Egypt

ALEXANDRIA: Prosecutors in Alexandria ordered the detention of a journalist and a photographer who were filming a report on the city’s iconic tramway on several charges.

Journalist Mai Saeed and photographer Ahmed Mostafa will be detained for 15 days pending investigations on several charges.

The journalist’s fiancee, Karam Zakareya, wrote on Facebook that Saeed is facing charges including the filming and documenting without a permit, as well as the the possession of audio and video recordings with the aims of disseminating false news that threatens public safety.

Zakareya said his fiancee is working for a UAE-based newspaper and another Lebanese news website.

He said Saaed was filming a report on Alexandria’s tramway in Mansheya and how the relationship between Egyptian passengers and tram employees had evolved over history.

“My fiancee is charged with all this just because she’s working on a report about Alexandria’s tramway. My lovely innocent fiancee has to stay in prison for 15 days merely for doing her job? I can’t believe this is real,” Zakareya wrote on Facebook on Friday.

Egypt has been at the center of backlash regarding freedom of the press levels. In 2016, the head of the Egyptian Press Syndicate was arrested, in what Amnesty International called “an unprecedented crackdown” on media in Egypt.


Door will stay open to Palestinians despite Bahrain boycott, Kushner tells Arab News

Updated 41 min 26 sec ago
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Door will stay open to Palestinians despite Bahrain boycott, Kushner tells Arab News

  • Kushner said US President Donald Trump had delivered on his promises to everyone, and would deliver on his promise to Palestinians
  • Kushner says he has laid out a great framework in which Palestinians can engage 'if they want to make their people’s lives better'

MANAMA: The “Peace to Prosperity” conference in Bahrain was “a remarkable couple of days,” White House adviser Jared Kushner said on Wednesday as he was pressed by Israeli reporters demanding to know what consequences Palestinians would face for refusing to attend.
The conflict was a “solvable problem economically,” Kushner said. “The Palestinian people have been promised a lot of things over the years that have not come true, and I do want to show them that this is the plan, this is what could happen if there is a peace deal.”
Kushner said he planned to follow up with investors to secure the funding. “Once we have that, we will roll into the political plan but we will do it with a context of people having the opportunity to digest what is possible.” It was a “constant theme” during the conference “that this is actually very doable,” he said.
Kushner’s press secretary controlled who could ask questions. He said he would only allow four, and called Israeli journalists from i24 Israeli TV and The Times of Israel.  When the press secretary waved me away, I asked if he would take a question from the only Palestinian reporter present, writing for Arab News. Kushner said: “Yes.”
I asked if he was going to close the door or leave it open to the Palestinians as his vision for economic peace moved forward.
“If they actually want to make their people’s lives better, we have now laid out a great framework in which they can engage and try to achieve it,” Kushner replied.
“We have left the door open the whole time. One thing you have seen with me is I tend not to get emotional about transactions at the end of the day, I understand people have their domestic politics and people have different ways of reacting.

“I think what you have seen from us is that we have been very respectful, very straightforward. We have been very deliberate. We take actions, not weighing the
political consequences. We have been weighing what is right and wrong.”
Kushner said US President Donald Trump had delivered on his promises to everyone, and would deliver on his promise to Palestinians.
“President Trump has said he wants to help the Palestinians achieve a better future for themselves, and I hope they will take it very seriously that he has been trying to do that. Hopefully what you have seen in the last couple of days shows there has been a lot of effort on a very high level, a lot of resources devoted to it.
“We are going to keep moving forward and we will put out our political plan at the right time. I do think that one of the things from today is that it will be very hard for people to go back to looking at this through a traditional lens. I do think that hopefully we have helped people look at it a little bit differently, and that is one of our goals.”