At least Peter Greste has what the majority of those who are unjustly persecuted or imprisoned have not. Mr Greste has the lens of the world’s media watching over him. From within this support Mr Greste has drawn strength while incarcerated in Cairo’s Mazraa’s prison. On New Year Day’s Mr Greste wrote a letter to NSW parliamentarian, Shaoquett Moselmane.
“I was particularly moved by the resolution that you introduced to the NSW Parliament last November, especially expressing the House’s support for freedom of the press, human rights and the rule of law,” wrote Mr Greste.
Mr Greste stated that his experience and that of his two fellow Al Jazeera journalists “has come to stand for so much more than our freedom alone.”
Mr Greste stated that he hoped that the apparent senselessness of his imprisonment will awaken in others a striving towards “universal principles”. He hopes that the Egyptian State and their Government may draw from his jailing. I hope not only that this may be the case for Egypt but also for many nations around the rest of the world. The United States of America has imprisoned more whistleblowers in the last decade than ever before in its history.
“We learned today that Egypt’s Court of Cassation (equivalent to the High Court) has accepted that our original trial and conviction was flawed, and ordered a retrial.”
Mr Greste wrote, “Although we will probably never be able to draw a direct line between the actions of our supporters and the authorities’ handling of our case here, I’m convinced that steps like your motion send a very clear message that the world is paying attention.”
“I would also like to thank you personally for hosting a lunch for my parents. Those gestures of support are just as important for my family who have had to endure a great deal in this affair, as they are for me.”
Mr Greste and his colleagues have been jailed for seven years, convicted of “spreading false news”. Sydney based Rick Mitry is Mr Greste’s Australia based legal counsel. Mr Mitry said that despite the recent quiet since the New Year, he believed that the Egyptian judicial system would announce a retrial. Mr Mitry’s firm, Mitry Lawyers, has been supporting the Greste family.
Mr Greste and his family are not alone.
People need people. If there is to be universal hope for humanity it will be founded in social equalities and in the day when humanity is there for everyone.