Head of Egyptian broadcasting company fined by gov’t for operating without a licence

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The head of an Egyptian broadcasting company, Nader Gowhar, has been fined by the government for operating without a licence, judicial sources reported Sunday. The ruling comes after Cairo became outraged that the Cairo News Company (CNC) published a footage of a protest in the country, which was carried by Al Jazeera. The footage run by Al Jazeera showed demonstrators stomping on a large photograph of President Hosni Mubarak.
Gowhar, the chairman of CNC, was fined 150,000 Egyptian pounds (US$ 27,000), “for possessing satellite communications equipment and operating a network without a licence.” Gowhar said earlier this year that his organisation had been trying to obtain proper licensing from the Ministry of Information, but the ministry was dragging its feet. The footage was of a massive popular uprising in Mahalla Al Kubra in April, where workers went on strike at a state-run factory. The following two days of protests led to the death of three people and injury to another 150. Dozens of people were arrested as rising food prices and poor living conditions brought widespread anger.

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