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Egypt's 'talk show emperors' set to return to the screen

As the presidential elections approach, the emperors of talk shows are returning to the Egyptian screens, raising questions on whether or not the regime is open to criticism or using the shows to embellish its image.
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CAIRO — With presidential elections scheduled for 2018, a number of Egyptian media figures are expected to return to the television screen this month following suspensions after criticizing the ruling regime and parliament. These personalities are popularly known as the “talk show emperors,” because of their strong and widespread fan bases.

Most notable among them is journalist Ibrahim Eissa, whose last appearance on the Al Kahera Wal Nas network was in December 2016. His show was canceled after he criticized parliament and President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi for exploiting the bombing of the Church of St. Peter and St. Paul that month by raising a discussion about amending the law to extend the term of the president. Some alleged that his comments violated Article 184 of the penal code, which prohibits insulting various government institutions and authorities.

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