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May 17, 2012 by · 1 Comment 

Al Alam

Raising additional questions about whether the regime of Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak is being replaced by a new authoritarian establishment, police have shut down the Cairo studios of the Iranian satellite broadcaster al-Alam. The official explanation is that al-Alam was operating without a license — despite the fact that it has been broadcasting from Cairo since 2002. The action was condemned by the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists, which called on authorities to return the station’s equipment and allow staff members to return to work. Bureau chief Ahmen al-Shweify told CPJ that al-Alam has been trying to obtain a permit for years but has been rebuffed. He added that he has learned that a warrant has been issued for his arrest. The CPJ indicated that the action against al-Alam appears to be part of a policy of intimidation against foreign journalists who criticize Egypt’s ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces.