Egyptian anchorwoman Shahira Amin,
who became "public enemy number" one in Israel for the insensitive interview
she conducted with Gilad Shalit
moments before he was transferred to Israel, is attempting to defend her reputation – on Facebook.
On Wednesday she wrote on her Facebook page: "I did not take advantage of Gilad Shalit as
the Israeli media is reporting."
Egyptian newswoman defends Shalit interview
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According to Amin, she only spent a few minutes with him before he was handed over to Israeli officials: "I told him the world was waiting to see and hear him. Had he said he wouldn't do it, I would not have pressed him. I have all the compassion for him and wish him the best."
|Insensitive - Amin interviews Gilad Shalit before release|
The interview with Shalit was held at the Kerem Shalom crossing under the watchful eyes of Hamas and Egyptian intelligence, but the reporter insists that no one dictated the questions.
- For full coverage of Shalit's homecoming, click here
Israel has made it clear that it did not approve of the interview and many have said that it looks forced and have criticized the fact that it was held before Shalit was able to reunite with his family.
Yet Amin's friends on Facebook were more complimentary, praising her interview with one saying: "You do not have to justify your job to the Israeli coward media. They feel jealous of you because You did your job as a real Egyptian Journalist." Another wrote: "They were jealous u have done the interview first ."
Officials in Israel said Tuesday evening they were surprised by the Egyptian interview and were unaware of Cairo's plans. Defense officials stressed that the TV interview was not undertaken with Israel's consent, coordination or knowledge.
Gilad's forced interview (Photo: AP)
As Israeli officials did not imagine that the Egyptians would seek to interview Shalit, the issue was not discussed in the meetings ahead of the swap and no request to avoid such interview was submitted by Jerusalem.
"We are all shocked that a so-called interview was forced on (Shalit) before he could even talk to his family or set foot on Israeli soil," an Israeli official said.