Middle East

Al Jazeera journalist urges Egypt to free him

Reporters at Abdullah Elshamy's court hearing record him as saying he had not seen a doctor or a lawyer since August.

Last updated: 05 May 2014 11:56
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The pictures of Al Jazeera Arabic journalist Abdullah Elshamy were taken by reporters at his hearing [Al Jazeera]

Detained Al Jazeera journalist, Abdullah Elshamy, has demanded that he be immediately released by the authorities in Egypt where he has been incarcerated since August last year.

Journalists covering Elshamy's court hearing on Saturday recorded him as saying that he had not seen a doctor or a lawyer since he was jailed.

An Egyptian court on Saturday extended Elshamy's detention by another 45 days.

In the audio recording, Elshamy is heard urging the Egyptian authorities to charge him if they had evidence against him.

"They know it's all a big sham, thus I insist on being released immediately," the correspondent for the Doha-based network's Arabic channel said.

Elshamy was also heard saying that claims by Egyptian prosecutors

that he wasn't on hunger strike were false and that he had filed seven statements with the authorities to officially document that he was.

Since his hunger strike began 100 days ago, Elshamy's weight has dropped from 108kg to 68kg.

The journalist, who has spent 264 days in prison, said he had been denied legal representation and medical attention since his arrest.

Elshamy and three other Al Jazeera journalists are being held by the Egyptian authorities. 

Peter Greste, Mohammed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed, who all work for Al Jazeera English, are accused of spreading false news and working with a banned organisation. Their trial has been adjourned until May 15.

Al Jazeera strongly denies the accusations made against its staff and has called on the Egyptian authorities to free them immediately.


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