Thursday, February 22, 2007

An Egyptian court has sentenced a blogger to four years' prison for insulting Islam and the president

BBC News:

Abdel Kareem Soliman's trial was the first time that a blogger had been prosecuted in Egypt.

He had used his web log to criticise the country's top Islamic institution, al-Azhar university and President Hosni Mubarak, whom he called a dictator.

A human rights group called the verdict "very tough" and a "strong message" to Egypt's thousands of bloggers.

Soliman, 22, was tried in his native city of Alexandria. He blogs under the name Kareem Amer.

A former student at al-Azhar, he called the institution "the university of terrorism" and accused it of suppressing free thought.

The university expelled him in 2006 and pressed prosecutors to put him on trial.

During the five-minute court session the judge said Soliman was guilty and would serve three years for insulting Islam and inciting sedition, and one year for insulting Mr Mubarak.

Egypt arrested a number of bloggers who had been critical of the government during 2006, but they were all subsequently freed.

Hafiz Abou Saada of the Egyptian Human Rights Organisation called the sentence "a strong message to all bloggers who are put under strong surveillance".

The UK-based organisation Amnesty International said the ruling was "yet another slap in the face of freedom for expression in Egypt".

Just one more example of how Islam is not compatible with the Western concept of free speech.


At 1:35 AM, Anonymous Jesse Somer said...

Dear Adam Lawson,

I wrote this post at my blog relating to your post as well as your blog in general:

'Some blogs are just ‘Bad News.’

I'm wondering how you can consistently post News articles about such sad and sorry topics. Doesn't it hurt your spirit? I'm also wondering why you simply paste up news articles, not sharing much of your own opinion. I don't like being critical...I'm just wondering what your take is on the 'modern tribe' of humanity. From your blog's motto I have to assume that you don't believe that multicutural societies can function properly. Is this the case?

Please don't take offence...I'm just trying to focus on the good things about humanity-keeping an optimistic perspective for our collective future. I sense that you think we have no hope? Am I wrong?


At 1:41 PM, Blogger Adam Lawson said...

From your blog's motto I have to assume that you don't believe that multicutural societies can function properly.

That is correct. Instead of just venting my personal views, I try to find news stories that back up my position. As you can see, I have found plenty.


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