Egyptian journalist who covered Sinai counterinsurgency goes on trial before military court

The military trial of an Egyptian freelance journalist accused of spreading false information about counterinsurgency operations in the volatile Sinai Peninsula has begun behind closed doors in a Suez Canal city.

Dozens of journalists protested the detention of Ahmed Abu-Draa outside the courtroom where he is being prosecuted in Ismailiya on Sunday.

Abu-Draa was detained 11 days ago after he wrote on Facebook that air strikes ostensibly targeting militants had hit civilian areas and accused military officials of misinformation.

Egyptian military spokesman Col. Ahmed Ali told reporters Sunday that Abu-Draa's fate is now in the hands of the military court, but that spreading false information as part of an "information war" is a national security threat.