After spending a total of 1,470 days in prison, Egyptian blogger Kareem Amer has finally been released. That period is 10 more days than the four year sentence he was slapped with for insulting Islam and President Mohammed Hosni Mubarak of Egypt on his blog (Ar).
Soon after his arrest, activists from around the world lobbied for his freedom, dedicating a blog for regular updates, a Twitter account, launching one petition after the other and organising Free Kareem rallies in front of Egyptian Embassies worldwide.
On @freekareem the message was loud and clear:
KAREEM AMER IS FREE!
And the Free Kareem Blog further elaborates:
Kareem Amer is now free, a close friend to Kareem reports.
Kareem refused to talk to anyone at the moment, however he reassures all his supporters worldwide that he’s fine. The brave man wants to have a little privacy for a week before he can say anything.
We totally respect Kareem’s wish, and that’s why we ask you, if you’re a journalist or a blogger, to respect Kareem’s wish too, until he chooses when to speak up.
Let’s celebrate Kareem’s release right now!
The post continues with a toast of thanks for all those who supported Kareem, whose real name is Abdul Kareem Nabeel Sulaiman, with his struggle:
FreeKareem.org staff wants to take this precious chance, and thanks everyone who supported Kareem through his honourable struggle against an unfair trial and an oppressive imprisonment. Thanks for all the activists who supported, through 4 full years and 10 days, our cause for Kareem! We can’t name anyone specifically here, not only because we’re overwhelmed, but also because the number of supporters is pretty huge. Thanks for everyone who has protested, rallied, supported, donated, written, shared, or even tweeted anything about Kareem from all over the world! Thank you very much!
According to the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information, Kareem was released on November 6 from the Borj Al Arab prison where he was held and then detained by the State Security Intelligence in Alexandria, where he was allegedly beaten, added the Free Kareem Blog.
Meanwhile, his disappearance for 10 days created panic among supporters and activists fighting for his release.
On Facebook, a campaign was launched entitled How Much for the Blogger?
The page appeals:
Kareem Amer has been kidnapped and beaten by State Security and his life is in real danger.
Become a Negotiator and join the Facebook Ransom Campaign immediately. Help us save his life!
And on Twitter, veteran Egyptian blogger Alaa Abd El Fattah asks:
الناس بتسأل ايه اللي ممكن يتعمل عشان كريم و أنا خايف يتوه في هوجة الانتخابات هل من نصائح؟
And Mohammed Maree replies:
وفى امكانية لتنظيم وقفة احتجاجية فى مصر وتكون متزامنة مع وقفة امام معظم السفارت والقنصليات المصرية بالخارج
A timeline of Kareem's journey to prison and his time there can be found here.