Accessibility links

Egypt to Jail Editor for Publishing Mubarak Rumors

An Egyptian appeals court has sentenced the editor of an independent newspaper to two months in prison on charges of publishing false information about the health of President Hosni Mubarak.

The court Sunday upheld an earlier ruling against Ibrahim Eissa, editor of Egypt's daily "Al-Dustour" newspaper.

A lower court sentenced Eissa in March to six months in prison with labor, but allowed him to post bail and postpone serving his sentence pending appeal.

Eissa, who was not in court when the verdict was announced, told reporters today he would turn himself in to serve the sentence. But he said the ruling opens what he called "the gates of hell" for Egyptian journalism.

Eissa's stories published last year alleged that the now 80-year-old president was in poor health.

Prosecutors accused him of spreading false information and prompting investors to withdraw $350-million worth of investments from Egypt.

Eissa has been an outspoken critic of Mr. Mubarak. The journalist told VOA recently he hoped the court would rule for a fine, but said he expected a jail term.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.