#FreeAJStaff action to hit 30 countries on Thursday

JOURNALISM is not a crime

JOURNALISM is not a crime

• Global Day of Action called in support of journalists detained in Egypt

• Stands of solidarity, vigils and events planned in 30 cities across the world

Events supporting Al Jazeera’s detained journalists in Egypt are planned in over 30 countries for this Thursday, 27 February 2014.

Al Jazeera hopes that, through the attention of the world’s media and partners, pressure can be brought to bear on the Egyptian authorities to hasten the release of Peter Greste, Mohammed Fahmy, Baher Mohamed and Abdullah El Shamy.

Al Jazeera English’s Mohamed, Fahmy and Greste have been detained since 29 December 2013. Al Jazeera Arabic’s El Shamy has been detained without charge since 14 August 2013 and has been on hunger strike in protest since 23 January 2014.

“We truly appreciate the solidarity from everybody right around the world,” says Dr. Mostefa Souag, general director of Al Jazeera Media Network. “The pressure, support and calls for our colleagues to be released have continued to keep the story in the news. The Global Day of Action is about the freedom of the press; it is about objective reporting and ensuring journalists cannot be gagged or silenced. We ask everyone to contribute to the Global Day of Action on Thursday. Journalism is not a crime.”

The hashtag #FreeAJStaff has gone viral worldwide, with quarter of a billion impressions on Twitter alone since 1 February 2014. The campaign has already had an outpouring of popular and political support worldwide, with institutions including the White House, European Union and the United Nations calling for the release of the journalists and for press freedoms to be upheld.

The campaign looks set to ramp up further with public events taking place in Nairobi, Sydney, Manila, Islamabad, Doha, Amman, Ankara, Berlin, London, Rio, Montreal, Washington DC and San Francisco on Thursday. Every continent of the world will see action.

Al Jazeera is urging people from all backgrounds to join in by supporting the rallies and amplifying the social media campaign using the hashtag #FreeAJstaff.

To build on the online #FreeAJstaff campaign, Al Jazeera will be using Thunderclap, which will allow people to pledge a Tweet, Facebook post, or Tumblr post containing the same message that’s unleashed, all at the same time, throughout the world.

For more information on the Global Day of Action, visit www.aljazeera.com/Freeajstaff.

For more details on Thunderclap:

1. Visit http://thndr.it/1nTMx5Z and click on a red “Support with” button for Twitter, Facebook, or Tumblr.

2. Click “Add My Support”

3. You’ll be prompted to authorize your account so Thunderclap can post a message for you; agree.

4. Spread the word and get other people to do it.

What happens:  At 14:00 GMT on Thursday, 27 February 2014, Thunderclap will post simultaneously to the hundreds of Twitter and Facebook accounts supporting the campaign in a truly global action.

For interviews, please email pressoffice@aljazeera.net.

By:
Kevin Kriedemann & Joy Sapieka
Publicists: Africa
AL JAZEERA MEDIA NETWORK

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