Egyptians protest Washington Post coverage of unrest


A large crowd gathers in front of The Washington Post building to protest coverage of Egypt and against the Muslim Brotherhood on Aug. 22, 2013, in Washington, D.C. (Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post)
August 22, 2013

Hundreds of Egyptian protesters converged in front of The Washington Post on Thursday saying that coverage of the military takeover and its bloody aftermath is skewed in favor of the ousted leader’s Islamist Muslim Brotherhood.

D.C. police closed the 1100 block of 15th Street NW as protesters — who had started outside the White House — massed at The Post’s front entrance about 2:15 p.m.

The Post locked its public entrance and closed a metal security gate. After about a half-hour, the group moved on.

Many of the demonstrators were Coptic Christians, who make up about one-tenth of Egypt’s population. They complained that The Post has not sufficiently covered the burning and looting of churches, reportedly by Islamists upset after Egypt’s new military government ordered a deadly raid on encampments of Brotherhood members on Aug. 14.

The Post on Wednesday published a front-page story about violence against Christians.

“Post = Brotherhood,” read one sign. Protesters chanted, “Washington Post, shame on you.” The Coptic Christians were joined by Muslims.

Kristine M. Coratti, a spokeswoman for The Post, defended the newspaper’s stories: “Our coverage of events in Egypt has been comprehensive, incorporating all perspectives, and it has been fair, accurate and honest.”

Protester Iris Soliman of Bethesda urged the media to stop calling the July 3 ouster of President Mohamed Morsi by military leader Gen. Abdel Fatah ­el-Sissi a coup. The Post calls it a coup in news stories. Soliman said the takeover should instead be recognized as the “second wave of the revolution,” referring to the popular uprising in 2011
that ousted President Hosni Mubarak.

Soliman said the newspaper has failed to sufficiently report on alleged abuses by Morsi.

Salwa El-Gebaly, who lives in Montgomery County, said, “Egypt is doing the entire world a favor by getting rid of extremists,” and she said she expects the Western media to reflect that.

Jennifer Jenkins contributed to this report.

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