The White House
President George W. Bush
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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
May 18, 2006

Statement on Denial of the Appeal of Egyptian Politician Ayman Nour

The United States is deeply troubled by the continued prosecution and imprisonment of Egyptian politician Ayman Nour. We are also disturbed by reports that Mr. Nour has been barred from writing while in prison and that diplomats have been prevented from visiting him.

We are concerned as well by the harsh tactics employed by Egyptian authorities against citizens peacefully demonstrating on behalf of Mr. Nour and political reform. We urge the Egyptian Government to exercise restraint in the application of emergency laws, and to permit demonstrations by those peacefully exercising their rights to freedom of assembly and expression.

The United States calls upon the Egyptian Government to act in the spirit of its professed desire for increased political openness and dialogue within Egyptian society by releasing Mr. Nour and protestors who have been detained. The United States supports the rights of Egyptians and people throughout the Middle East to peacefully advocate for democracy and political reform.

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