Retrial of two jailed Al Jazeera journalists to begin this week

Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed jailed for allegedly helping Muslim Brotherhood

Mohammed Fahmy talks to the judge in a courthouse near Tora prison last May. A holder of joint Egyptian-Canadian nationality, he may be released and deported. Photograph: Hamada Elrasam/AFP

Mohammed Fahmy talks to the judge in a courthouse near Tora prison last May. A holder of joint Egyptian-Canadian nationality, he may be released and deported. Photograph: Hamada Elrasam/AFP

 

The retrial of two Al Jazeera journalists jailed in Egypt will start on Thursday.

Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed were sentenced to seven and 10 years in jail respectively last year on charges including spreading lies to help a terrorist organisation – a reference to the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood.

A third Al Jazeera reporter, Australian national Peter Greste, was sentenced alongside them, but was unexpectedly freed and deported last Sunday.

Egypt’s high court ordered a retrial of all three journalists last month.

Under a decree issued last November, Egyptian president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has the power to approve the deportation of foreign prisoners. Following Greste’s release, Egyptian security officials said that Fahmy, who held joint Egyptian-Canadian nationality, might soon be deported.

Baher Mohamed is Egyptian and holds no foreign nationality, making his case more difficult to resolve.

Egyptian authorities accuse Al Jazeera of being a mouthpiece of the Brotherhood, the movement the army deposed in 2013. Al Jazeera denies the claim. – (Reuters)