Stand-up comedian released after interrogation

The Public Prosecution on Wednesday released stand-up comedian Ali Kandeel on LE5,000 bail after hearing testimony from him on charges of defaming Islam during a show presented by satirist Bassem Youssef.

Several activists, representatives of rights organizations and lawyers were present during the interrogation.

Kandeel told Al-Masry Al-Youm that he respects all religions, especially Islam, and added that his comments on the show did not criticize religion but religious discourse.

Kandeel presented a stand-up comedy segement in which he criticized, among other things, the harsh, threatening tone some preachers put on when addressing people, which he said turned people off.

Youssef was released on LE15,000 bail Sunday pending further investigations into charges of insulting the president, defaming Islam and spreading lies.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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