Mohamed ElBaradei canceled his planned visit to al-Dostour‘s journalists, who are staging a sit-in at the Journalists Syndicate, after Syndicate Chief Makram Mohamed Ahmed denied him entry to the building. Al-Dostour journalists said the decision followed orders by security authorities.
Ahmed told Al-Masry Al-Youm that he informed ElBaradei of the decision to reject his visit on Monday as he failed to obtain prior permission from the Syndicate.
Ahmed criticized ElBaradei for accepting an invitation from one of the journalists, citing the behavior as unacceptable from an international personality such as ElBaradei. Ahmed declined to comment on whether he would have accepted ElBaradei’s visit had he officially requested the Syndicate’s permission.
Syndicate members differed in their view of the decision to turn away ElBaradei. Syndicate member Gamal Fahmy said he opposed the decision, saying ElBaradei’s international stature gives him the right to enter the syndicate in support of journalists.
Gamal Abdel Rahim, another syndicate member, opined that ElBaradei had the right to visit the Syndicate as long as it constituted a personal visit void of political undertones that could create trouble within the syndicate.
Syndicate member Yahyia Qulash opposed the decision for different reasons, claiming that “the Chief does not have the right to make decisions on his own without first consulting members of the board.”
“All board members maintain the right to invite whomever they wish,” he added.
On the other hand, syndicate member Mohamed Abdel Qudoos agreed with the decision. “ElBaradei failed to inform any Syndicate member and therefore has no right to enter in support of the journalists,” he argued.
Translated from the Arabic Edition.