Al Jazeera welcomes journalist's release from Egypt jail

UPDATE - Egypt releases Australian journalist Peter Greste

CAIRO (AA) – Australian journalist Peter Greste, who works for the Qatari news network Al Jazeera, has been released from a jail in Egypt, a security source said Sunday.

Egyptian television, meanwhile, said the Australian journalist was deported to his country after his release.

The deportation was done in the light of a 2014 law that gives Egypt's president the right to deport foreign convicts to serve their sentences back in their countries, a source, who requested anonymity, told The Anadolu Agency.

The Egyptian Foreign Ministry coordinated with the Australian embassy in Cairo to book a flight for the released journalist, a ministry source who requested anonymity, told AA.

Shaban Saeed, a member of the defense team of the Australian journalist, said he and his team had lodged several appeals at the presidency in January for issuing a pardon for Greste and his other colleagues involved in the same case.

"Today's release of Greste is a glimmer of hope for the rest of the defendants and we hope they will be released as soon as possible," Saeed told AA.

Al Jazeera Network on Sunday welcomed Greste's release, describing the move as "good news."

The network also expressed hopes that Egyptian authorities would release two other journalists put in jail in Egypt against the background of the same case.

Greste was arrested in December of 2013 together with two other journalists – Egyptian-Canadian Mohamed Fahmi and Egyptian Baher Mohamed – and accused of broadcasting false news.

In June of 2014, the three journalists were handed prison sentences between seven and ten years.

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