Egypt pardons Al-Jazeera journalists

The Egyptian president has pardoned two Al-Jazeera journalists and dozens of human rights activists.

The pair, Canadian journalist Mohamed Fahmy and Egyptian national Baher Mohammed, were expected to be released later in the day.

The state-run MENA news agency said a third person, which included multiple other defendants along with Australian journalist Peter Greste, was also pardoned but was not identified by name. Mr Greste was deported earlier this year.

A tweet from Mr Fahmy’s account read:

“Thank you to all the supporters sending us the news, we have heard and are very happy. AJ Staff is Free!”

“I don’t know what to say. It is done. Thank God, thank God,” said Mr Fahmy’s brother Adel.

The three journalists were sentenced to three years in prison last month for airing what a court described as “false news” and biased coverage.

Prominent Egyptian activists Yara Sallam and Sanaa Seif were among about 100 people pardoned by President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, according to MENA, on the eve of the major Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, when Egyptian presidents usually pardon convicts for health or other reasons.

The pardon came a day before Mr el-Sissi was to travel to New York to attend the UN General Assembly.


Lifestyle

We know porridge is one of the best ways to start the day but being virtuous day in, day out can be boring.The Shape I'm In: Food blogger Indy Power

Sheila O’Flanagan can’t pin down an exact number of books she has written.First lady of fiction: Sheila O'Flanagan is happy to be accessible

This might not be the most entertaining topic but it is that time of year when colds, flus and nasty bugs enter classrooms and homes.Mum's the Word: Top tips for keeping nasty bugs and illnesses at bay

Laura Whalen is a Munster-based dollmaker and mother-of-five, and the founder of the Bábóg project, a community crafting drive to make a commemorative doll for all the babies born in Irish mother and baby homes.Made in Munster: Meet the West Cork dollmaker who uses bio-degradable materials for her craft

More From The Irish Examiner