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Parents of Nigerian-raised Al Jazeera Journalist Urge Egypt to Release Son

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Abdullah Elshamy’s Parents

Throughout history, certain courageous, altruistic individuals have sacrificed their freedom for the common good.

Nigerian-raised Egyptian Al Jazeera broadcast reporter, Abdullah El-Shamy, is one of such individuals. He was arrested while covering the Egyptian military’s bloody crackdown on Muslim Brotherhood protesters in August, 2013 in Cairo.

El-Shamy has since been imprisoned for 253 days, and has embarked on a hunger strike to protest his internment. He is currently on the 94th day of his strike.

Three other Al Jazeera reporters were also detained in Egypt: Al Jazeera English correspondent, Peter Greste and producers Mohammed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed, who have been detained since December 2013.

El-shamy’s parents, Elshamy Nusehy Elshamy and Thuraya Elshamy, who are based in Lagos, have been campaigning non-stop for the release of their son and the three other journalists who were imprisoned.

Speaking to Al Jazeera two days ago, his parents expressed that their son is fighting not for himself, but for a free media.

His mother, Thuraya, told Al Jazeera that despite concerns about Abdullah’s health, his family are right behind him in his hunger strike.

“I urge Abdullah to continue his hunger strike, because now it is not for himself, it is for freedom and for all his colleagues. My son is innocent and he loves his country of Egypt. He has always reported the truth; his motivation has always been humanitarian professional causes,” she said.

Calls for the journalists’ release have also been made from the White House, the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office, and the European Union.

Similarly, public calls of support for the #FreeAJStaff campaign have been made from prominent media personalities with over 50,000 people supporting the #FreeAJStaff campaign, which has had over 1.1 billion impressions on twitter.

Various media freedom and human rights groups have also issued statements, including the Committee to Protect Journalists, the International Press Institute, Amnesty International and Foreign Correspondents’ Association of East Africa.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families of these brave journalists. We really hope that Abdullah El-Shamy, Peter Greste, Mohammed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed are released soon.

Photo Credit: Al Jazeera Media Network/Abdullah El-Shamy’s Parents

3 Comments

  1. Aderonke

    April 25, 2014 at 3:14 pm

    May the Lord grant these young men grace and strength to hang in there. I know God never forsakes his own, he truly repays sacrifice. These young men are fighting for a good cause and they will definitely come out victorious in Jesus Name. We join our prayers with their families and pray they will be released soon. We also pray that the International community will help intervene for the release of these young men.

  2. i no send

    April 27, 2014 at 6:57 pm

    which one is nigerian raised again??

    • justdeywakapass

      September 19, 2014 at 2:27 pm

      He was brought up in nigeria and his parents still live in Nigeria.

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