Islamist reporter banned from medical travel

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CAIRO: Egyptian authorities have banned the Muslim Brotherhood’s English-language website editor from travel abroad for medical treatment, a human rights group said on Sunday.

Khaled Hamza, the editor of Ikhwanweb, was barred from boarding a British Airways flight to London, where he was to undergo medical treatment, the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) said in a statement.

Hamza told the Ikhwanweb site that security services held him at Cairo airport and told him he was barred from travel due to his affiliation with the banned Islamist group.

“Preventing Khaled Hamza from traveling came without legal justification or judicial decision, it was an arbitrary and extralegal decision from the ministry of interior, ANHRI said.

“Journalists and human rights activists are undesirables in this troubled region we call the Arab world, the group said, accusing Arab states of “perpetrating hostile and obstructive acts against journalists and activists.

The Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt’s largest opposition group, is formally banned but fielded independent candidates in 2005 elections, winning a fifth of the seats in parliament. -AFP

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