Egypt cancels live broadcast licenses

Egyptian Minister of Information has canceled all licenses of firms providing television satellite uplinks, a further step in a crackdown on the media ahead of a crucial parliamentary election.

The Middle East News Agency said on Monday the minister Annas al-Fiqqi has ordered all firms providing the service or television network to apply for new licenses.

Providers have complained that the measure is aimed at controlling live television broadcasts such as political talk-shows.

Live broadcast providers have confirmed the decision.

“Although we have a valid permit, but we were asked to renew the license,” a manager in a Cairo-based firm told Al-Masry Al-Youm on condition of anonymity.  

Last month Egypt shut down several private television channels on grounds of violating broadcasting license.

Activists say the move will stifle efforts to mobilize voters ahead of the upcoming elections slated for 28 November.

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