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Egypt's Morsi withdraws complaints against media

Wednesday - 4/10/2013, 3:03pm  ET

File -- In this Sunday, March 31, 2013 file photo, Egyptian television satirist Bassem Youssef — known as Egypt's Jon Stewart —waves to his supporters as he enters Egypt's state prosecutors office to face charges for allegedly insulting Islam and the country's leader, in Cairo, Egypt. A Cairo court turned down on Saturday, April 5, 2013, a separate suit filed by a Muslim Brotherhood lawyer demanding that a popular Egyptian satirist's TV show be banned for allegedly insulting the president and excessive sexual innuendo. There have been multiple complaints filed in courts and to state prosecutors by Islamist lawyers against Youssef and other public figures for their political or religious opinions. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil, File)

CAIRO (AP) -- An Egyptian official says the president has ordered withdrawal of complaints against journalists for allegedly reporting rumors.

Presidential spokesman Ehab Fahmy said Mohammed Morsi ordered cancellation of the complaints filed by the president's legal office after reviewing the cases "out of respect for freedom of expression and freedom of the press."

When reached for further comment, the presidency did not release details about how many complaints had been filed since Morsi's election in June.

The decision does not affect charges filed by Islamist lawyers against journalists and media personalities for allegedly insulting Morsi and Islam.

Popular TV satirist Bassem Youssef is among many who still face investigations for expressing their political or religious opinions.


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