An Egyptian court Saturday sentenced a novelist to two years in prison on charges of publishing a material of “sexual content and offending public morality”, legal sources said. The Cairo Appeals Court made the decision after granting an appeal by prosecution against an earlier acquittal of novelist Ahmad Naji, the sources added
In August 2014, Naji published a chapter of his novel “Using Life” in the state-run literary weekly Akhbar Al Adab. Last month, a misdemeanour court cleared Naji and editor of the magazine Tarik Al Taher of the charges.
On Saturday, the court also ordered Taher of paying a fine of 10,000 Egyptian pounds (around Dh 3,570) after convicting him of duty negligence. The ruling can be appealed. The verdict is the latest in a string of jail sentences against writers in Egypt, raising concerns about free expression in the country.
Last month, another court sentenced well-known liberal writer Fatima Naoot to three years in prison on charges of defaming religion after she had posted a Facebook comment criticizing Islam’s annual ritual of sacrificing animals during the major Muslim festival of Eid Al Adha.
In December, Muslim researcher Islam Al Behery was handed one year in prison after he was found guilty of defaming religion on a now-suspended TV show.
SOURCE : GULFNEWS