23 February 2007

Egyptian blogger jailed

From Associated Press:
ALEXANDRIA, Egypt, Feb. 22 -- An Egyptian blogger was convicted Thursday and sentenced to four years in prison for insulting Islam and Egypt's president, sending a chill through fellow Internet writers who fear a government crackdown.

Abdel Kareem Nabil, a 22-year-old former student at Egypt's Al-Azhar University, had been a vocal secularist and sharp critic of conservative Muslims in his blog. He often lashed out at Al-Azhar -- the most prominent religious centre in Sunni Islam -- calling it "the university of terrorism" and accusing it of encouraging extremism.

Egyptian blogger Abdel Kareem Nabil, 22, centre, is escorted by police officers from a police van and towards a court house in Alexandria, Egypt Thursday, Feb. 22, 2007. The Egyptian blogger was convicted of insulting Islam and President Hosni Mubarak and sentenced to four years in prison on Thursday in Egypt's first prosecution of a blogger. (AP Photo)