GTower. Photo: @withcuriosity, Attribution License, Creative Commons.

Al Jazeera is calling for a Global Day of Action on Thursday 27 February to protest the detention of their journalists by the Egyptian government. It will also be a day to raise awareness for the freedom of journalists everywhere.

Following the ousting of the Muslim Brotherhood from power, several Al Jazeera journalists were detained and put on trial in Egypt on the charge of aiding terrorists. At least three have been detained for 60 days, while one journalist has been detained since August.

A total group of 20 journalists are currently on trial in Egypt. The Global Day of Action aims to spread the message that “journalism is not a crime.” Al Jazeera urges anybody who supports freedom of press and freedom of expression to show solidarity on Thursday.

In KL, the protest will be marked by a public flashmob at 1pm, in the lobby of GTower, Jalan Ampang. There will also be an online Thunderclap, where people can support the protest through social media by scheduling tweets and Facebook posts with the hashtag #FreeAJstaff. These posts will then be published simultaneously around the world to build a viral campaign.

“What is going in in in Egypt right now is a trial of journalism itself,” said Al Anstey, managing director of Al Jazeera English. “It is critical that we remain resolute in calling for freedom of speech, for the right for people to know, and for the immediate release of all of Al Jazeera’s journalists in detention in Egypt.”

Ling Low