|El Wafd Party leader sentences in Egypt|
|Tuesday, 30 October 2007|
Egyptian court sources announced that yesterday the head of Egypt's nationalist opposition el-Wafd party and two party journalists have been sentenced to a month in jail after being convicted in absentia of libel
The court rulings were the latest to target independent and opposition media in the most populous Arab country, where at least 11 journalists have been handed jail terms since early September.
The Sources added that “on Saturday, Mahmoud Abaza the leader of el-Wafd Party was convicted and sentenced by a court in the southern city of Assiut”
The editor of the Al-Wafd newspaper, Anwar el-Hawari and the paper's Assiut correspondent, Younes Darwish, were also ordered jailed for a month each.
“Men were convicted of libel after the el-Wafd newspaper reported accusations against two businessmen of illegally appropriating land belonging to the Ministry of Religious Endowments”, the sources continued.
The men were tried in absentia and did not appear in court. The men remained free pending appeal. The newspaper said it appealed the ruling and adding that the appeal was dated for January 5.
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