[JURIST] Amnesty International (AI) [advocacy website] on Wednesday declared [press release] Egypt’s continued detention of three Al Jazeera [media website] journalists charged with falsifying news and involvement with the Muslim Brotherhood [party website] “vindictive.” Al Jazeera English staff Mohamed Fahmy, Peter Greste and Baher Mohamed, are accused of supplying money, equipment and information to the Muslim Brotherhood, a group that the government has been declared a terrorist organization [JURIST report]. Greste, Fahmy and Mohamed were detained [JURIST report] in December. At their last hearing in March 31 the judge ordered and investigation into whether three of the students were beaten during their arrest by Egyptian security forces. The journalists pleaded not guilty [JURIST report] in February and have been denied bail. Their trial resumes on April 10.
Political conflict in Egypt has been ongoing since the 2011 revolution [JURIST backgrounder], most recently between supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood and the former government of Mohammed Morsi, and supporters of the new government in place since Morsi’s ouster [JURIST report]. In February 2014, an Egyptian court acquitted [JURIST report] an Al Jazeera television cameraman and 61 others accused of participating in demonstrations in Cairo last July. In January Egyptian prosecutors charged [JURIST report] 20 Al Jazeera journalists, including Greste, Fahmy and Mohamed, with joining or conspiring with a terrorist group and broadcasting false images. Given the continued unrest, the Committee to Protect Journalists [advocacy website] last December