I rise to condemn the decision that has seen Australian journalist Peter Greste facing a seven-year prison term in Egypt, as has been reported in the media today. I note that the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop, has said that she was shocked by the decision and will initiate contact with Egypt’s government at the highest level to gain some kind of intervention.
As a 23-year member of the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance, I know journalism is not just a profession, it is a trade for a lifetime, and I certainly stand in solidarity with my colleagues in these difficult times. I note that yesterday Peter’s brother Andrew tweeted:
Gutted, devastated, dumbfounded, shattered, can’t describe the emotions of today’s outcome.
I am sure he would draw strength, as the family would, from the continued support of all Australians and of the media profession internationally that will seek for justice to prevail in this case. I commend the Australian government on the work that it will do to try to bring that about.