Egyptian journalist Ismail al-Iskandarani during his trial – press photo
CAIRO – 22 May 2018: Egypt’s military court has sentenced Egyptian researcher and journalist Ismail al-Iskandarani, along with another defendant, to 10 years in prison on May 22 on accusations of belonging to an illegal organization and spreading false news regarding national security in Sinai.
Iskandarani was accused by the Supreme Prosecution after publishing several investigations and articles about Sinai’s demographic nature, along with the tribes’ traditions and their views on the performance of the Armed Fforces.
During the investigations, Iskandarani denied all the accusations and confirmed that he made the investigations in cooperation with several international foundations; however, none of them were affiliated with any security body for foreign states. He also denied belonging to any illegal or terrorist organization.
Iskandarani was arrested at Hurghada Airport while returning from Germany to Cairo to visit his sick mother in December 2015.
It was reported that he had lectured and participated in a series of seminars in Europe and the U.S. on the political situation in Egypt.
His wife claimed on her official Twitter account that a report was filed against him by the Egyptian embassy in Berlin. Security officers at the airport investigated him and found on his laptop articles on the political and security situation in Sinai.
Iskandarani is a sociopolitical researcher and investigative freelance journalist who specializes in the affairs of Sinai. He is also a volunteer researcher on Sinai issues at the Egyptian Center for Economic and Social Rights (ECESR).
Moreover, he has been a fellow researcher at the Paris-based Arab Reform Initiative (ARI) since 2013, where he receives education on the future relationship between the progressive Islamists and the secular left in Egypt.
In 2015, before his detention, he published a chapter called "Violence in Sinai: the State's War on Society and Producing Terrorism" in a book titled "L'Egypte en revolution(s)" (Egypt in revolution[s]).
He also wrote for several local and international news websites and was awarded several local and international press prizes.
Additional reporting by Jehad El-Sayed