In many countries, those who dare to criticize their governments, speak on behalf of a suppressed minority, or call for political or economic reforms are often portrayed as "traitors" trying to disseminate hatred and hostility and disturb national stability. In such cases, states that are often "equipped" with tailor-made national laws, remaining on alert to punish those who are courageous enough to challenge their governments can easily harass those who dare to defy the state's policies, measures or even orientation. As noted by James D. Seymour in his article Indices of Political Imprisonment, imprisonment is one of the most widely-used tools to punish those who dare to challenge the state by exercising their right to freedom of expression. In Egypt, despite statements made by political leaders promising reforms, harassment and violations are key features of the Egyptian political discourse. President Mubarak has failed to keep his promises of 2004 to eliminate press offenses and journalists imprisonments. Today, Egypt is one of the only 13 remaining countries in the world where journalists are imprisoned, and one can still find 35 articles scattered in a number of pieces of legislation, that hold the potential for imprisonment of journalists. Consequently, jailing journalists in Egypt is a regularly-used mechanism to punish journalists who persistently criticize their government.


School of Global Affairs and Public Policy


Law Department

Degree Name

MA in International Human Rights Law

Date of Award

Spring 6-1-2008

Online Submission Date


First Advisor

Tanya Monforte

Committee Member 1

Chantal Thomas

Committee Member 2

Ann Lesch

Document Type



vi, 77 leaves

Library of Congress Subject Heading 1

Freedom of the press

Library of Congress Subject Heading 2



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Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Call Number

Thesis 2008/48