Egypt's independent press protests 'lack of press freedom'

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Egypt's independent and opposition newspapers did not publish their Tuesday (December 4th) editions, saying they are protesting a lack of press freedom in the country's draft constitution.

The country's constituent assembly approved the 234 articles of the draft constitution on Friday and Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi set December 15th as the date for a popular referendum on the document.

The Egypt Independent announced on its website that it suspended publishing because it "objects to continued restrictions on media liberties, especially after hundreds of Egyptians gave their lives for freedom".

Daily newspaper Al-Masry Al-Youm said the newspapers were "protesting against the articles on the press in the draft constitution […] and reject [President Mohamed Morsi's] November 22nd decree", which said no authority can revoke presidential decisions.

Government newspapers, including Al-Ahram, went to print as usual on Tuesday.

Private television channels may join the protest Wednesday and suspend broadcasting, some newspapers said.

Also on Tuesday, opposition groups rallied at the presidential palace to protest the new constitution, the assembly's vote and President Morsi's decree.

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