Liliane Daoud, a famous British-Lebanese television talk show host, has been deported by the British authorities.
On Monday, the former BBC journalist, Ms. Daoud was arrested by plain-clothed police officers at her home in Cairo and put on a plane to Beirut. This happened hours after the termination of her contract by OnTv, a privately-owned channel.
Her show Al-Soura Al-Kamila also known as the Full Picture aired controversial views critical of President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi and his government.
When Ms. Daoud was led out of her home by the police, her daughter, an Egyptian national was in the house. The officers confiscated Ms. Daoud’s British passport and her mobile phone.
No formal explanation was given in regards to her deportation, but a security officer told the Associated Press that Ms. Daoud’s residential permit had expired.
Before she was arrested, she wrote on her Twitter account that she is announcing the official termination of her contract with the OnTv after five years of service that started in 2011.
Her lawyer, Zyad El-Elaimy said that immediately upon Ms. Daoud’s arrival in Beirut, she stated that she was going to challenge the deportation decision. Mr. Elaimy released a statement through a call to the Associated Press indicating that this is the first time a person has been deported in this way from Egypt. He added that the Egyptian authorities were not ready to hear any diverse voices or hear anyone supporting the 2011 uprising that befell the longtime President Hosni Mubarak.
Her deportation led to the emergence of a campaign run by the Egypt journalist union against the authorities whom they believed have sparkled war on media freedom. Al-Soura Al-Kamila’s editor in chief, Amer Tamam, said that the campaigning is against respectable media and free journalism. He also stated that they did not deserve the punishment since all they were doing was airing a decent show.
Ms. Daoud was praised by the Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Mohamed ElBardei for her courage, credibility, and professionalism. Mohammed ElBardei served shortly as an Interim vice-president when Morsi was ousted. He wrote on Twitter that a day would come when they will have the adequate self-confidence to understand the advantages of having diverse opinions.
Satirist Bassem Youssef, a TV host who’s Show was banned due to its criticism of the government said that Ms. Daoud’s arrest was just the beginning of many to come. He wrote on his Facebook that Egypt cannot stomach the rest of the world.