Bloomberg News

Egypt Officials Halt Broadcast of Documentary on Jews

March 13, 2013

The screening of a documentary about Egypt’s Jews scheduled for today has been suspended after security officials delayed the renewal of its authorization, according to the producer.

The head of Egypt’s censorship office “apologized to me and told me that a security authority requested to view the film before renewing its screening authorization and regardless of the previous censorship approvals,” Haitham Al Khamissi, producer of the “Jews of Egypt,” said in a statement. He said the screening would be postponed “until we find a solution to this incomprehensible issue.”

Egypt’s Jewish community has dwindled since the 1948 Middle East war and the creation of the state of Israel. They totaled less than 100 people in 2004 down from 75,000 in 1948, according to the Jewish Virtual Library.

Censorship official Abdel Sattar Fathy, who is named in the statement, said by phone the documentary makers rushed to publicize the screening before getting authorization. He said he was “astonished” by the producer’s statement.

Fathy said he was seeking to expedite a response from security bodies “as I want people to see the documentary.”

The screening was slated for viewing in three movie theaters today.

To contact the reporter on this story: Mariam Fam in Cairo at mfam1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden at barden@bloomberg.net


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