Target: Hesham Mohamed Zaki Barakat, Egyptian Public Prosecutor
Goal: Celebrate the release of a formerly jailed reporter in Egypt
Reporter Abdullah Elshamy was released after being jailed with no charge for ten months in Egypt. Elshamy works as a journalist for the Al Jazeera Media Network, and was covering the Rabaa Aladaweya sit-in in Cairo, Egypt, when he was detained by security. After 307 days of imprisonment, Elshamy is finally free.
Innocent journalists being jailed without charge is unfortunately not an uncommon criminality. Although it is phenomenally great news that the journalist Abdullah Elshamy was released, he should not have been imprisoned to begin with. As this previous Force Change petition details, Elshamy was beaten multiple times and went on a hunger strike in response to his ill treatment. No journalist who is simply doing their job should have to endure such cruel treatment.
According to Al Jazeera’s lawyer, “‘The appeal which was accepted…was based on the fact that Abdullah was carrying out his duties as a correspondent for Al Jazeera at the time of his arrest’”.
Elshamy is now reunited with his wife Gehad Khaled and is given time to recover from the atrocity that he endured. On Elshamy’s journalist career at Al Jazeera, a spokesman for Al Jazeera said, “ ‘When [Abdullah]’s ready, we look forward to seeing him back in action, doing the vital job of journalism that he so clearly loves’”.
Please sign the petition below to thank those who helped with Elshamy’s release, including Egypt’s Public Prosecutor Hesham Mohamed Zaki Barakat, various human rights groups, and those who helped spread the word through social media.
Dear Hesham Mohamed Zaki Barakat,
Hearing about the long-time reporter Abdullah Elshamy’s release was quite heartening. Although he should never have been jailed to begin with and had to endure imprisonment for ten months, it is still truly tremendous that he has been released. There is much to celebrate now that he is reunited with his family and is recovering peacefully.
Thank you for ordering Elshamy’s release from prison, and please work to release the other journalists who are currently being jailed without charge. I look forward to hearing more success stories about the release of innocent journalists.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Raduasandei via Wikimedia Commons