Along with the Syrian blogosphere, bloggers in the Maghreb (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Western Sahara, and Mauritania) stand against the injustice Kareem is facing: Maghreb bloggers condemn the imprisonment of an Egyptian blogger.
Maghreb bloggers condemn the imprisonment of an Egyptian blogger
Many bloggers were disheartened by the sentencing of Egyptian blogger Kareem Amer to four years in prison.
Many Maghreb bloggers condemned the recent sentencing of an Egyptian blogger to four years in prison for insulting Islam and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. The blogger, 22-year-old Kareem Amer, is a staunch critic of Mubarak, and has accused al-Azhar University, the most prominent religious establishment in Sunni Islam, of encouraging extremism.
“Four years of imprisonment for Kareem Amer. Three years for insulting Islam and one year for Mubarak … Criticism in our countries is an insult and a crime. Sorry Kareem, [but] talk is useless, my friend … you will grow in status, and they will shrink,” blogged al-Moudawina Attounisia.
His crime is that he blogs, wrote Moroccan blogger Naim. “He was imprisoned for expressing himself on his personal space. This happens in Egypt in the 21st century.”
Under the headline, “Shame on Egypt: Blogging is not a crime!”, Moroccan blogger Larbi addressed Kareem. “You have committed the unforgivable by doubting Islam and criticizing the government … You are only 22-years-old, but you’ve already known prison and interrogations and will surely get out scarred for life. Your mistake is being born in a place characterized by denial of free thinking, persecution, inhumanity and the absence of liberty. Your sole mistake is denouncing the autocratic regime of Hosni Mubarak and the radical and retrograde alternative of Islamists.”
Thysdrus quoted an article by a Saudi blogger about the fast-growing blogging phenomenon in the Arab World. “Governments in the region should stop wasting time and resources cracking down on bloggers, and should focus more on the benefits they can gain from blogging. Blogs can give indications of trends and public opinion regarding pressing issues in every country, and leaders and officials should learn to be more open to criticism: They should realize that being in the public eye does not give them some kind of immunity. On the contrary, it is the other way around,” said the blogger.
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