CAIRO: The Press Syndicate received approval from the Ministry of Interior for 100 bulletproof vests to be used to protect journalists during coverage of clashes and protests, press syndicate head Diaa Rashwan told The Cairo Post Sunday.
Rashwan said the syndicate requested the vests from the Ministry of Interior shortly after the death of Al-Dostour journalist Mayda Ashraf, who was shot and killed while covering clashes at Ain Shams University on Friday.
The syndicate has not yet decided how the vests will be distributed among journalists, said Rashwan, adding that they also do not know when and how they will receive the vests from the ministry.
The syndicate will decide whether the vests will be given on loan to syndicate members or journalists who are not yet part of the syndicate, said Rashwan.
He added that the syndicate will make the best use of vests, as each one of them costs 15,000 EGP (U.S. $2,152).
Mayda Ashraf, 22, was a journalist for Al-Dostour newspaper, and was killed Friday while covering clashes between pro-Muslim Brotherhood supporters and security forces.
Journalists in Egypt have faced an increasing amount of violence in recent years while covering protests and clashes. In Reporters Without Borders 2014 Press Freedom Index Egypt ranked 159 out of 180 countries. While the index largely takes into account abuses on press freedom regarding the freedom of the information, the ranking also reflects the attacks and violence targeting journalists in the country.
Additional reporting by Mohamed Ghamrawy.