Posted by: Lisa Hill | February 2, 2015

Peter Greste, Free at Last

Monday, Feb 2, at nearly four in the morning and there is breaking news that Peter Greste has been released from gaol in Egypt and is on his way home.

Greste is the Australian journalist who was tried and convicted on spurious charges of supporting terrorism – when all he was doing was his job as a journalist.  He has been in gaol for 400 days but is now being deported from Egypt.

Congratulations to all who worked tirelessly for his release.  But the campaign isn’t over – his Al Jazeera colleagues are still behind bars.

To support the work of those committed to freedom of speech for journalists all over the world, join PEN International and add your voice.

Update (a bit after 4:00AM): There’s a tweet on the PEN International website that says the deportation of Canadian Mohamed Fahmy will follow.  No news yet about Egyptian producer Baher Mohamed.

 


Responses

  1. Thanks for not steering clear of the political. This guy was probably an honest reporter just doing his job in the Middle East, but there are probably reasons in the past to be skeptical of Australians working in the Middle East.

    • Such as?

      • The Iraq War

        • Fair enough… I thought you were talking specifically about journalists in the Middle East, hence my question.

  2. Wonderful news.

  3. I have been closely following the case of these men and I woke up in the night and heard it was looking likely he would be released so I am so happy for him and his family it has happened. Fingers crossed for his mates.

  4. Fantastic, Peter Greste is free, and I hope the other two men are also released.

  5. Thanks for sharing this. Our government here has been dragging its feet on the matter of Fahmy for a long time and sadly too many here still feel Egyptian-Canadians are less than truly Canadian.

    • Well, you would know better what your government is doing than I do, but I think it’s very hard to know what governments are actually doing in cases like this. They would have to be very circumspect in a place like Egypt where there is no proper process of law because as we have seen, the government can change overnight and then all the balls are up in the air again.
      Anyway, let’s hope he gets home soon, but we must not forget the Egyptian caught up in all this, nor the thousands of other political prisoners in Egypt.

      • Our government is not transparent, but there is a sentiment among much of their base support that hyphenated Canadians (especially those from the Middle East) are less worthy. I do realize that care is required but an acknowledgement of concern only comes with intense public pressure.

        • It’s sad to hear about those attitudes, I tend to think of Canada as a open-minded multicultural society. But if what you say is right, it could be that they don’t see any votes in making their efforts public.

  6. Great to see, I hope the other two will soon be freed too. I think Al Jazeera English do a great job and appreciate the risk their reporters take in bringing these stories to us.

    • I think they are amazingly brave…


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