In a country where being a member of the Muslim Brotherhood is illegal and liable to punishment, a small piece of good news:
A Muslim Brotherhood blogger was released Saturday after a 45-day detention, but the crackdown against the group continued, with 51 Brotherhood members arrested in recent days, police said.
Abdel Moneim Mahmoud, 27, a well known blogger and correspondent for the London-based Al-Hewar Arabic TV Channel, and 23 others, mostly students, had been held since mid-April for being members of the banned group. The fellow detainees were also released Saturday, said the police, speaking on customary condition of anonymity.
Mahmoud’s release came amid a continued government crackdown against the Brotherhood in the lead up to June elections for the upper house of Parliament, known as the Shura Council, that will include candidates from the group.
Human Rights Watch has documented the numerous times the Egyptian regime has arrested, intimidated and tortured members of the Brotherhood. The deafening silence from most Western governments and media elites proves how shallow their belief in democracy truly is. The majority of Egyptians I am speaking to tell me that even though some are opposed to the Brotherhood’s aims, they strongly believe in their right to assemble, run in elections and speak in public.