CAIRO, July 3 Egypt's military-led authorities
shut down three Islamist-run TV stations on Wednesday including
one operated by the Muslim Brotherhood after President Mohamed
Mursi was toppled by the army, drawing a statement of concern
from a press freedom watchdog.
The security forces also raided the offices of Al Jazeera's
Egyptian news channel and detained at least five of its staff,
said Karim El-Assiuti, one of its journalists. Four of them were
later released, the channel said.
The channel, Al Jazeera Mubasher Misr, was prevented from
broadcasting from a pro-Mursi rally in northern Cairo and its
crew there was also detained.
The Egyptian arm of the Qatari-owned media company began
broadcasting after the 2011 uprising that topped President Hosni
Mubarak and has been accused by critics of being sympathetic to
Mursi's Muslim Brotherhood.
The Brotherhood's Egypt25 channel was forced off air and its
managers arrested shortly after General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi,
head of Egypt's armed forces, announced a plan for a new
political transition, the state news agency MENA reported.
The authorities also shut down two other Islamist-run
stations, Al-Hafiz and Al-Nas, security sources said. Both are
affiliated to the strict Salafi Islamist movement.
"We are concerned by reports that authorities are shutting
down television coverage based on political perspective," said
Sherif Mansour of the New York-based Committee to Protect
Journalists. "We urge the military not to deprive Egyptians of
information sources at this important juncture."
(Reporting by Cairo bureau; Writing by Tom Perry; Editing by