By Brian Stelter, CNN
(CNN) - Monday began on an optimistic note for many of the journalists who had campaigned for the release of three imprisoned Al Jazeera English journalists in Egypt. They expected that the journalists - Peter Greste, Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed - would be freed after nearly six months behind bars. "Make this freedom day," Al Jazeera correspondent Sue Turton wrote on Twitter.
Alex Thomson, an anchor for Britain's Channel 4 News who'd carried masking tape with him for months and posted dozens of Twitter photos of his mouth duct-taped in a dramatic show of solidarity with the Al Jazeera journalists, had taken a picture of a full roll of tape and written hopefully Sunday, "Goodbye to all this? Verdict is tomorrow."
But after the verdict was read, and the three journalists weresentenced to seven-plus years in prison, Thomson adorned the duct tape once again and posted a new photo. He captioned it, "Depressing day for freedom of speech."
By Brian Stelter and Ashley Fantz, CNN
(CNN) - Three Al Jazeera English journalists were convicted in Egypt on Monday of aiding the Muslim Brotherhood in a ruling that immediately outraged journalists and activists around the world.
Peter Greste, Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed had been imprisoned in Cairo since December on charges that included conspiring with the Brotherhood, spreading false news and endangering national security.
Brian Stelter updates viewers on the incarcerated Al Jazeera journalists who remain in Egyptian custody.
CNN’s Sara Sidner tells Brian Stelter about how she has stepped in to file reports on Al Jazeera while their reporters have been barred from working in Egypt.
Above: With Al Jazeera journalists imprisoned in Egypt and new charges that 20 journalists have aided terrorists, CNN chief international correspondent Christiane Amanpour explains why people everywhere should be outraged.
(Last Tuesday, Amanpour covered the situation on her CNN International program.)
Here's the transcript of her comments on "Reliable Sources:"
STELTER: The head of Al Jazeera English says that this current situation is a threat to journalism itself. Do you agree it's that serious?
AMANPOUR: I really do agree. I mean, look, we have an unprecedented number of journalists in Egypt, foreign and domestic, who have been charged with - get this - terrorism. I mean, give me a break. It is the last refuge of an authoritarian dictatorial regime, whether it's in Egypt or wherever it is, who simply doesn't want the truth told.
And what's happening in Egypt is that journalists, whether they be from Al Jazeera, CNN, BBC or, indeed, Egyptian journalists, are being forced into partisan positions. If you do not follow slavishly the military government line in Egypt, you are deemed a terrorist.
If you try to be objective in your coverage, you are deemed a terrorist. I mean, it is terrible what's happening there. It is silencing the truth.
STELTER: Well, to hear charges of aiding terrorists you know, in Egypt, that must have a chilling effect on the journalists who are still there trying to cover that story.
AMANPOUR: Precisely, and that's why you've seen very little objective, truthful journalism coming out of there. As I said, people are being forced into camps. I said two camps, but, actually, it's really one camp right now. People are being forced to take sides in order to be safe and not to go to prison. And, wherever you look, journalists are in the cross-hairs more than I have ever experienced, ever in my career.
STELTER: For viewers at home who don't think about this stuff all the time, why does it matter that the journalists are in the cross-hairs?
AMANPOUR: Well, it matters a lot because, although we may be viewed as pesky, unwelcome intruders, whether in - in Western democracies or in dictatorships, we are the people who go out there with a mission to tell the truth. It is actually as simple as that. We are the people who go out there and uncover corruption, uncover injustice, and try to tell the world what's going on. We are the eyes and ears, the eyewitnesses to what's going on in the world at the time.
STELTER: One of the Al Jazeera journalists who is in prison right now in Egypt - he used to work here at CNN, Mohamed Fahmy - did you ever cross paths with him?
AMANPOUR: Yes, I did. He's done a lot of producing work for me, for my program, as well as when I was on the ground - on the ground in Egypt.
And again, for 38 days, he was held in jail, along with some of the others, and was not charged - no access to family or lawyers. He apparently has an injury in his shoulder, and he has not been able to even have any medical care.
I mean, by any standards, this is a violation of every law and of all decency. And this is just a journalist. It is not somebody who's out there with a weapon other than his camera and his pencil. And it is just utterly unacceptable, and these people must be released. And our governments, particularly those who have major dealings with Egypt and upon whom Egypt relies, ought to be reading the Egyptian authorities the riot act over this.
STELTER: Christiane, thank you for putting the spotlight on this for us.
AMANPOUR: Thanks, Brian. Thank you.
Guest host Frank Sesno remarks on what makes a reliable source… and what doesn’t. (Teaser: Who knew a sex tape could teach you something outside the realm of sex?)
David Zurawik and Mohammed el Nawawy join guest host Eric Deggans to discuss the Qatar-based network’s Stateside debut.
By Sara Fischer, CNN
There’s a lot to discuss on ‘Reliable Sources’ this Sunday with our guest host, Eric Deggans, TV and media critic for the Tampa Bay Times and future TV critic for NPR.
We’ll start by taking a look at the coverage of the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington. Additionally, we will discuss the media coverage of American civil rights with longtime CBS Evening News anchor Dan Rather, along with Senior External Affairs Director of Free Press, Joseph Torres and Founding Member of the National Association of Black Journalists, Paul Delaney.
Also on the show, we’ll speak with a Brian Beutler, political writer for Salon and New York Times Columnist Charles Blow about whether the media has been hyping the national race discussion and the fairness of its’ coverage.
We’ll also invite panelists David Zurawik, television and media critic for The Baltimore Sun and Mohammed el Nawawy, author and professor at Queens University of Charlotte to give their take on the launch of Al Jazeera America this week.
Kelly McBride of the Poynter Institute will also join us to discuss ESPN’s decision to pull its logo and credit from "Frontline's" upcoming documentary about the controversial subject of sports and brain injury.
Lastly, we will chat with Wil Haygood, columnist for The Washington Post, who first reported on veteran White House butler Eugene Allen, the man who served as the inspiration for Lee Daniel's new film, "The Butler."
Tune in Sunday morning at 11am ET.
Joanne Lipman, Michael Calderone and Edward Felsenthal preview the launch of Al Jazeera America.
Guest host Frank Sesno talks to former Al Jazeera English anchor David Marash about the challenges ahead of Al Jazeera America’s August launch in the U.S.