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Scholars Decry Arrest of Ph.D. Student in Egypt

July 9, 2018

The Middle East Studies Association has sent a letter to Egyptian authorities protesting the detention and arrest in Cairo of Waleed Khalil el-Sayed Salem, a University of Washington Ph.D. student. The association's letter states that Salem was conducting important research at the time on the interaction of judges and lawyers in Egypt. "Mr. Salem is a young scholar, but he has already established a reputation among those who know him for the serious and scholarly nature of his work," the letter said. The Seattle Times reported that Salem's lawyers said he was facing charges of "spreading fake news" and of ties to a terrorist group -- charges they said were false.

The embassy of Egypt did not respond to a request for comment.

A University of Washington spokesman, asked for comment, sent the following via email: "I cannot provide or confirm any information on this individual. However, in a case such as this one, our paramount interest is the safety of any member of our community, whether student, faculty or staff. The university would do everything in its power to contact the appropriate authorities in an effort to advocate for and protect a student. We would, of course, issue a statement if and when we believe it would serve this interest."

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Scott Jaschik

Scott Jaschik, Editor, is one of the three founders of Inside Higher Ed. With Doug Lederman, he leads the editorial operations of Inside Higher Ed, overseeing news content, opinion pieces, career advice, blogs and other features. Scott is a leading voice on higher education issues, quoted regularly in publications nationwide, and publishing articles on colleges in publications such as The New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Washington Post, Salon, and elsewhere. He has been a judge or screener for the National Magazine Awards, the Online Journalism Awards, the Folio Editorial Excellence Awards, and the Education Writers Association Awards. Scott served as a mentor in the community college fellowship program of the Hechinger Institute on Education and the Media, of Teachers College, Columbia University. He is a member of the board of the Education Writers Association. From 1999-2003, Scott was editor of The Chronicle of Higher Education. Scott grew up in Rochester, N.Y., and graduated from Cornell University in 1985. He lives in Washington.

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