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Egypt Releases Al Jazeera Reporter

Al Jazeera Arabic service reporter Abdullah Elshamy is greeted by friends and family after being released from a Cairo prison Tuesday evening, June 17, 2014. (VOA / Hamada Elrasam)
An Al Jazeera Arabic reporter was released from an Egyptian prison Tuesday, 10 months after being arrested and held without charge in a case that prompted serious criticism of Egypt’s military-led government.

The Qatar-based satellite channel said Abdullah Elshamy was transferred to a Cairo police station after being set free from the notorious, high-security Scorpion prison.

Egypt's prosecutor general on Monday had ordered his release, citing “health conditions.”

The 26-year-old was met by his mother, wife and brothers as he walked out of the police station in a northern Cairo suburb, The Associated Press reported.

"The appeal which was accepted by the public prosecution was based on the fact that Abdullah was carrying out his duties as a correspondent for Al Jazeera at the time of his arrest,” an Al Jazeera lawyer Shaaban Saeed said.

Elshamy was arrested on August 14, 2013, while reporting the police dispersal of sit-in protest in Cairo. In January, he went on hunger strike to protest his detention.

His arrest coincided with a wide crackdown on Islamist supporters of President Mohammed Morsi, who was overthrown by the military last year.

Egyptian officials have accused the channel of supporting the Muslim Brotherhood, an organization and political party that has been labeled a terrorist organization by the Egyptian government. The network has denied the allegations

Three other employees of Al Jazeera English— Peter Greste, Baher Mohamed and Mohamed Fahmy— remain jailed on terrorism-related charges.