Terry Waite, Alan Johnston and Amnesty International call on Egypt to find Al Jazeera staff not guilty

Talk Friday 20 June 2014, 11:00 AM

The court in Cairo is expected to reach a verdict on the Al Jazeera English journalists accused of aiding and abetting terrorism on Monday 23 June. The case has provoked worldwide condemnation as a trial of the free press in Egypt. Journalism itself has been on trial. Mohamed Fahmy, Peter Greste and Baher Mohamed will have been incarcerated for 177 days on their next day in court. Four other Al Jazeera journalists are also being tried in absentia.

Former hostages Terry Waite and Alan Johnston will join Amnesty’s Egypt expert Nicholas Piachaud at the Frontline Club on Friday 20 June at 11:00 AM to call for the Al Jazeera English journalists to be found not guilty of all the charges and sent home to their families.

Terry Waite was held captive for over 1,700 days in Lebanon after attempting to negotiate the release of other prisoners in the 1980s. He is a towering figure in conflict resolution and inter-cultural relations but, after spending 24 hours a day chained to a radiator, he also understands the effects of prolonged captivity.

BBC journalist Alan Johnston was kidnapped in Gaza City in 2007 and held for 114 days. He was aware, in captivity, of the worldwide campaign the BBC had launched to free him, a campaign that helped him through his ordeal.

Amnesty’s Nicholas Piachaud believes that the trial of Al Jazeera’s journalists has sent a clear message to both the international and domestic media that Egypt does not tolerate dissent.

For further queries or crewing requirements please call Ruchi Patel from Al Jazeera on 07811 392 474 or Millicent Teasdale at the Frontline Club on 0207 4798940.