Doha Centre for Media Freedom has urged Egyptian authorities to release Al Jazeera producer Mahmoud Husain who was arrested in Cairo last week shortly after he arrived in Egypt on a family visit from Qatar.
"Doha Centre for Media Freedom is following with serious concern the arrest of Mahmoud Hussein, Al Jazeera News Channel producer, and his two brothers by Egyptian Authorities, upon his return to Egypt to spend his annual leave last week," said the centre in a statement yesterday.
"We believe that such practices are part of a systematic campaign against media conducted by the Egyptian Authorities to repress freedom of expression, and to silence free and professional press voices.
"DCMF calls on all concerned organisations to pressure Egyptian authorities to release Mahmoud Hussein immediately and stop their crackdown on the press," said the statement.
Hussein was arrested on December 20 when he arrived in Egypt, on charges of attempting to overthrow the government and being a member of the banned Muslim Brotherhood the officials and Al Jazeera said.
He had been stopped and interrogated in Cairo airport when he arrived on Tuesday but was set free before police raided his house.
Al Jazeera expresed its concern for Hussein's safety, and called for his immediate release on a statement saying that the charges against him are fabricated.
Egypt provoked international condemnation after arresting three Al Jazeera journalists, including a Canadian and an Australian, in 2013 and sentencing them to jail.
They were later freed and left the country.
A prosecution official said Hussein is accused of incitement to violence and publishing false news and belonging to the banned Muslim Brotherhood movement.
The accusations are similar to those levelled against the three journalists arrested in 2013.
Source: DCMF, Reports