Egypt extends detention of mother held for ‘false news’

A screenshot of the interview with Zubaida, whose mother was ordered to remain in jail for 45 days after prosecutors appealed a ruling on Tuesday to release her. (Screen grab ON E TV)
Updated 17 January 2019
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Egypt extends detention of mother held for ‘false news’

  • Umm Zubeida has been in custody since March 2018 over accusations that she belonged to a “terrorist group” and spread false news

CAIRO: An Egyptian court on Thursday extended the detention of a woman accused of spreading false news by telling the BBC her daughter had been forcibly disappeared, a judicial source said.
Mona Mahmud Mohammad, also known as Umm Zubeida, was ordered to remain in jail for 45 days after prosecutors appealed a ruling on Tuesday to release her, the source added.
Mohammad has been in custody since March 2018 over accusations that she belonged to a “terrorist group” and spread false news.
She was featured in a BBC report aired in February last year saying her daughter had been the victim of a forced disappearance.
The report, which stirred a strong backlash from the government, also detailed other allegations of people being jailed, tortured or disappeared in Egypt.
Mohammad’s daughter later appeared on a local television show saying she had run away from her mother, married and had a child.
Egypt’s State Information Service, which regulates foreign media, had called on the British broadcaster to retract its report or face a government boycott.
The BBC responded that it stood by “the integrity of our reporting teams.”
Rights groups have repeatedly accused Egyptian authorities of carrying out a widespread crackdown on dissent, but the government denies the allegations.


US Attorney General backs Trump over Mueller report

Updated 6 min 28 sec ago
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US Attorney General backs Trump over Mueller report

WASHINGTON: US Attorney General William Barr said on Thursday that the Mueller Report confirms the Russian government sought to meddle in the 2016 US presidential election, but that no evidence was found that any American conspired or coordinated with the Russian government.

While Mueller drew no conclusion about whether President Donald Trump had obstructed justice in the investigation, Barr said he and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein personally had concluded that while Trump was "frustrated and angry" about the Mueller probe, nothing the president did rose to the level of an "obstruction-of-justice offense," Barr said

Mueller's report examined 10 episodes pertaining to Trump and obstruction.

Barr said the president did not exert executive privilege to withhold anything in the report. And he said the president's personal attorney had requested and gotten a chance to review the report before its public release.

The Justice Department was to release a redacted version of the special counsel's report later Thursday on Russian election interference and the Trump campaign, opening up months, if not years, of fights over what the document means in a deeply divided country.