European watchdog unhappy at Egypt TV riots coverage

21st October 2011, Comments 0 comments

The European Broadcasing Union said Friday it was unhappy about Egyptian state television's coverage of recent deadly sectarian clashes in Cairo, saying it failed to report the events impartially.

"It is alleged that ERTU (the Egyptian state broadcaster) anchors did not report the events in an independent and impartial way, and some claim that ERTU encouraged viewers to side with the military," the association said.

The association's president and director-general have written to the Egyptian broadcaster to raise their "extreme concern".

In the letter, they highlighted the fact that "membership of the EBU entails a commitment to independent and impartial reporting at the service of all sections of the population, including minorities."

The October 9 clashes in central Cairo claimed 25 lives and left over 300 injured.

State television accused the Coptic demonstrators of firing shots that killed three army troops, prompting fights between Christians and Muslims later that night.

The EBU is an association of national broadcasters, with members from 56 countries in and around Europe.

© 2011 AFP

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