Monday, November 29, 2010

Egyptian blogger Abdel Kareem Nabil Soliman released

I don't remember the last time I received good news remotely related to human rights and fundamental freedoms in Egypt. This explains why I warmly welcome and celebrate the release of Abdel Kareem Nabil Soliman -  a prominent Egyptian blogger who was arrested in 2006 and sentenced to four years in prison for insulting islam and defaming the Egyptian President (by linking him to dictatorship and tyranny) on his blog. Kareem was released on 16 November 2010 after spending four years behind bars, despite campaigns by local and international human rights groups to secure his release.

You'd recall that in an article, published on 13 May 2010 about the young Egyptian blogger imprisoned, I stated (and I maintain) that the imprisonment of an individual simply because a government thinks his/her expressed views are flawed is a violation of the basic right to hold and express opinions on or offline.

It is worth mentioning that I was positively impressed by a heartwarming message of gratitude to everyone who supported the campaign to free Kareem, published on following the release of the blogger. Let me be clear: I supported the cause simply because I'm a firm believer in fundamental rights and freedoms.

Abdel Kareem Nabil is now free, but numerous bloggers remain jailed in many countries around the world, including Vietnam, Iran, Syria and Bahrian. Governments should take crucial steps to uphold freedom of expression.

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