1 year ago
Egyptian Al-Jazeera readers might need to find another news source.
Egypt banned 21 websites, including Al-Jazeera, for “supporting terrorism” on Wednesday. Reuters reports that the government blocked the websites for their affiliation with the Muslim Brotherhood or ties to Qatar.
In 2013, the Brotherhood was removed from power when Mohamed Mursi vacated the presidency following mass protests in 2013. Egypt accuses the Qatari government of backing the Islamist group.
Though, discrepancies remain in Egypt’s rationale. Mada Masr, an Egypt-based media outlet without ties to Qatar, was also among the websites blocked. The Huffington Post’s Arabic version was similarly down, but the international site has been allowed to remain up.
Egypt’s move follows similar actions taken by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates after Qatari-linked news websites published false reports about the Gulf states’ efforts to isolate Iran, Bloomberg reports. The fake news story was first posted on the Qatar News Agency website early Wednesday—allegedly by hackers.
In 2014, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates pulled their envoys from Qatar. Tensions between the Gulf nations, though, have eased in recent years.