Egypt court drops case against television satire show | Middle East| News and analysis of events in the Arab world | DW | 06.04.2013
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Middle East

Egypt court drops case against television satire show

A court in Cairo has dismissed a lawsuit calling for a political satire show to be taken off the air. The show’s host, Bassem Youssef, had been detained and released on bail last week on charges of defaming Islam.

The administrative court threw out the lawsuit on Saturday, saying that the plaintiff did not have an interest in the case.

An Islamist lawyer had filed the suit, calling for the television channel CBC - which broadcasts the weekly satire show - to have its operating license suspended. The lawyer said that the show, called "El-Bernameg" or "The Program," had "corrupted morals" and violated "religious principles."

The show's host, Bassem Youssef, was detained and questioned in a separate case last week over allegations that he defamed Islam and Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi. Youssef was released on a bail of 15,000 Egyptian pounds ($2,192, 1,696 euros).

Back on the air

Youssef was back on the air on Friday for the first time since being questioned by the authorities. He began the show by saying that he "overdid it."

"Not everything has to be about the president," Youssef said. "This isn't fear. I am not pulling back."

He then went on to continue poking fun at the president and the Egyptian government, saying that he would not talk about Morsi, just the attorney general.

Youssef then sarcastically responded to a news clip by a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, who said that the satirist focused only on the Islamist group and the president.

"They are not two things," Youssef said. "They are one."

slk/mz (AP, dpa)