Egyptian authorities continue to arbitrarily detain journalist Abdel Nasser Salama in the high-security Scorpion 2 prison, despite his worsened health condition.
And yesterday, Saturday 28 May, a Cairo criminal court extended Salama’s sentence still further. He has been detained since 19 July 2021, as part of case 1683 of that year.
Egyptian authorities arrested Salama in his Alexandria rest house at dawn on 18 July 2021, after he published an article criticising Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. In a series of articles on economic conditions in the country, focusing on the likely catastrophic results of the Renaissance dam project, Salama demanded that al-Sisi resign.
Salama’s family and lawyer have submitted several requests that he be transferred to the hospital following a recent deterioration of his health. Salama suffers from several pre-existing conditions, the symptoms of which have worsened due to the appalling conditions of his detention.
The journalist has previously embarked on an open hunger strike in protest both against his arrest and the harsh conditions of his detention.
Egypt’s press freedom rating, issued by the independent Reporters Without Borders, has fallen from 166th globally in 2021 to 168th in 2022.
The number of Egyptian journalists currently detained in the country, including members and non-members of the Union of Journalists, is 71.