Lina Attalah: Egypt’s news outlet’s chief editor released on bail

The editor-in-chief of a prominent investigative media outlet in Egypt, Mada Masr, has been released hours after being arrested by security forces in Cairo.

Lina Attalah was arrested outside Cairo’s Tora Prison complex where she was interviewing Laila Soueif, the mother of jailed activist Alaa Abdel Fattah.

She was released on bail late on Sunday from a police station that she was taken to.

According to the media outlet, Attalah remained in police custody for about three hours after her bail fee of 2,000 Egyptian pounds ($126.53) was paid, before being released from the police station in Maadi, a Cairo neighbourhood.

Lawyer Hassan al-Azhari had told AFP news agency that the reason behind the arrest and the charges against Attallah were unclear.

Attalah’s arrest is the latest amid a wider crackdown on dissent in the North African country.

Mada Masr is one of the hundreds of websites blocked by the Egyptian government in recent years.

The outlet has continued to publish through mirror sites. It has produced investigative pieces looking into some of Egypt’s government institutions, including intelligence agencies, military and the presidency.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s government has repeatedly harassed Mada Masr and its journalists. In November, security forces raided its offices, briefly detaining Attalah and two other journalists.

The November raid came just a day after Mada Masr said security forces arrested one of its editors, Shady Zalat, from his home in Cairo. Zalat was later released.

 

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