Fathy Shehab Eddin, the Shura Council member who now heads the committee responsible for choosing state-run newspapers' chief editors, said Wednesday that the committee has inquired at the Journalists Syndicate about candidates who had previously been penalized by the syndicate.
Shehab Eddin, who also heads the Shura Council's culture committee, said the panel had received a list of five names who were previously subjected to disciplinary measures by the Journalists Syndicate, two of whom were accused of relations with Israel.
He said accusations concern those who deal with Israeli official institutions, figures or the public and that evidence of normalization with Israel would automatically disqualify a candidate. He noted that those who visited Israel-occupied lands with an Israeli visa for a journalist mission would not be subject to exclusion.
Normalization would be a main reason to exclude a candidate, Shehab Eddin said. Those who have visited the Palestinian occupied territories with Israeli visa for journalistic purposes, however, shall not be charged with normalization.
He said that the committee has completed the selection of candidates for Al-Ahram, Al-Akhbar and Dar al-Hilal. The rest of the candidates will be chosen by Sunday.
There will be three candidates for daily newspapers and two for weeklies. These finalists will be voted on by the Shura Council.
The Egyptian newspaper industry is divided into three categories: state-owned newspapers, private newspapers and papers issued by political parties. State-owned papers are supervised by the Shura Council, which appoints their editors-in-chief.
Edited Translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm