Cairo: Egypt's interior minister on Friday accused those reporting cases of alleged police torture of being part of an 'unpatriotic campaign' to tarnish the country's police forces.

Habib Al Adly warned Egyptians against using the internet to jeopardise national security.

Information posted on the internet that poses a hazard to the government "is a very dangerous crime - a crime of which its victims include individuals, the state and its institutions", Habib Al Adly told state-run Egyptian television during a more than one-hour long interview.

He did not elaborate, and it was not immediately clear if Al Adly was specifically referring to recent controversial postings on the internet by bloggers.

Human rights groups have accused Egypt of suppressing freedom of expression, most recently over the arrest of a 22-year-old blogger who is on trial for insulting Islam and causing sectarian strife for his internet writings.

Egyptian authorities in November arrested Abdul Kareem Nabeel, who often denounced Islamic authorities and criticised President Hosni Mubarak on his Arabic-language blog. His prosecution is Egypt's first of a blogger.

Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have condemned Egypt's arrests of bloggers, and media watchdog Reporters Without Borders included Egypt in a recently released 'Enemies of the internet' report.

Egypt also has come under criticism by rights groups and activists after a video was widely circulated on the internet appearing to show a man being tortured by police.

Rights groups have said the man, a bus driver, was tortured at a police station in Cairo a year ago.

Police say he was detained for attempting to stop an argument, and though he was released without being charged at the time, earlier this month he was sentenced to three months in prison for resisting authorities.

Al Adly warned Egyptians not to generalise individual cases, saying "torture is prohibited". "I consider this to be an intended unpatriotic campaign to hit a national service that seeks stability in the country."

The interior minister also accused Egypt's largest opposition group, the Muslim Brotherhood, of illegal activities.