Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi has signed into law the formation of a new media council that will penalise media outlets for any violation of their directives, which are yet to be determined.
President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi has ratified a law that empowers a new media council to regulate, fine or suspend broadcasters and publications for breaking licensing terms or violating its regulations, which are yet to be determined, according to Reuters. The aim of the law is to limit both national and international disruptions pertaining to ethical journalism and national security. The law, which was signed on Monday, also allows the media council to issue or revoke foreign media licenses.
El-Sisi will decide on the new members of the council with the assistance of judiciary and parliament nominations. The parliament is also set to discuss a second law that looks over freedom of information, confidentiality of sourcing, and sentencing after the establishment of the media council takes place.
According to the Committee for Protecting Journalists (CPJ), Egyptian media freedoms have been incessantly criticised by human rights organisations, with Egypt recently ranking 2nd behind China, for the highest number of imprisoned journalists.