One of Egypt’s main weekly cultural publications, Al-Qahera, issued a blank front page for its Tuesday edition to signify solidarity with novelist Ahmed Nagy, who received a two-year prison sentence for publishing writings with sexual content.
The cover page of the magazine, which is widely circulated in local cultural and artistic scenes, displayed just three words in Arabic, which translated into “No to the trial of imagination”.
The Bulaq Criminal Court sentenced Nagy Saturday to two years in prison on charges of publishing and writing “obscene sexual content”.
The court also ordered editor of Akhbar Al-Adab, Tarek Al-Taher, to pay a fine of EGP 10,000 after a chapter of Nagy’s novel “The Use of Life” was published in the literary journal, a subsidiary of state-owned Akhbar Al-Youm. The novel had already been previously published by Dar El-Tanweer publishing house.
In several statements and a conference, journalists, intellectuals, and public figures called for solidarity with Nagy as well as other writers and scholars who have been legally prosecuted due to the content of their work.