Prominent British-Lebanese Journalist Deported From Egypt

Mark Babatunde June 29, 2016
photo: nbcnews.com

Liliane Daoud, a popular television talk show host, was forcefully kicked out of Egypt by Egyptian authorities. Before she was deported, Daoud hosted the show “Al-Soura Al-Kamila“(pictured) on the privately owned television station OnTv.

Daoud, who has Lebanese and British citizenship, worked with OnTv since 2011. Previously, she worked with the BBC as a journalist and lived in London before moving to Egypt after the Arab Spring uprising that led to the fall of Hosni Mubarak’s regime. On Monday, Daoud was arrested by plainclothes policemen just a few hours before she was deported.

The officers are reported to have seized her British passport and denied her access to her mobile phone. Egyptian authorities have not provided an official statement as to why she was deported, but a security official told the Associated Press that her residency permit had expired.

Daoud is known to have been critical of the government and policies of Egypt’s new strong man leader Abdul-Fattah al-Sisi on her show, where she is known to have featured a balanced and diverse range of guests that included anti-government protesters, youth leaders, government officials, and members of the Islamic Brotherhood.

Hours before she was arrested, Daoud told her Twitter followers, “I am announcing the official termination of my contract with OnTv after five years that began in 2011.” Her decision was hardly surprising as in May, OnTv was sold by its previous owner businessman Nagruib Sawiris to Ahmed Abou, a prominent supporter of President al-Sisi.

Since coming into power in the 2013 coup that ousted former President Mohammed Morsi, al-Sisi has displayed an increasing intolerance toward the free press. Human rights groups have repeatedly condemned President al-Sisi’s introduction of retrogressive laws that remove the limits on the time in which political dissidents can remain in detention. He has also instituted a blanket ban on public protests and demonstrations.

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