To The Spoilers Go The Victory

Very balanced piece on the current crisis in Israel/ Palestine by Michael Koplow that is definitely worth reading.

Ottomans and Zionists

Nothing sends people to their instinctual and reflexive tribal bunkers like fighting between Israel and Hamas. Sometimes things are complicated and sometimes they are black and white, but it’s difficult to tell what’s what during times like this. When rockets rain down on Israelis forced to flee in the middle of the night to shelters and stairwells in their pajamas, and when entire blocks of Gaza City are reduced to rubble, the market for looking at the wider context is almost non-existent. Nevertheless, let’s give it a shot.

There are two sets of events–tensions over Jerusalem, and fighting between Israel and Hamas–that are barreling out of control, and while they are linked in a few important ways, they should be considered separately. While many would argue that the series of events that unfolded in Jerusalem over the past weeks is complex and the Israel-Hamas contretemps is straightforward, it’s actually the…

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Twitter thread: The complex legal situation of Jerusalem properties

As the escalation in Israel-Palestine continues to rise, it is important to understand the root of the current crisis. This interesting thread may help explaining the complexity of the situation in Jerusalem.

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Podcast: Did talks in Geneva get closer to uniting Cyprus?

Reposting my latest podcast for Ahval’s Turkey Trends on latest UN sponsored Cyprus talks with Fikri Toros, member of Turkish Cypriot TRNC parliament.

Fikri Toros believes that the appetite for a just reunification exists on the Turkish Cypriot side. 

“Turkish Cypriots basically demonstrated their strong will on a bizonal and bicommunal federation based upon political equality,” Toros told Ahval in a recent podcast, referring to the result of a referendum to reunite the island in April 24, 2004. “This political will and desire of the Turkish Cypriots remain intact and valid.” 

Toros, who is a member of the pro-federation main opposition Republican Turkish Party, is still optimistic for a solution based on the federation model despite the apparent prevalence of support for a two-state solution, exemplified by the victory of Tatar at presidential elections in October.

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This Week in Egypt: Week 18-2021 ( May 3-9)

Top Headlines

  • France to sell Egypt 30 fighter jets in $4.5 billion deal, Egyptian and French armies carry out joint naval, air drills 
  • Egypt and Turkey officials meet for talks to reset frayed ties 
  • Egypt calls on Turkey to stop escalations against Greece and Cyprus 
  • Ethiopian dam is an ‘existential issue’ for Egypt, El-Sisi tells US Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa
  • Congo’s leader visited Sudan and Egypt amid efforts to resolve Nile dispute
  • S&P affirms Egypt’s rating on robust reserves and access to debt

Main Headlines

Monday

  • France to sell Egypt 30 fighter jets in $4.5 billion deal 
  • Sudanese FM: Second GERD filling will impact lives of millions in Sudan
  • Egypt celebrates one of world’s oldest folk festivals Sham El-Nesim

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

  • Egypt reduces compensation required from Ever-Given owners to $600M
  • Erdogan says Turkey and Egypt to enhance normalization talks
  • Erdogan: It saddens me to see Egyptians in solidarity with Greeks 
  • Turkey makes clear intent to keep military presence, mercenaries in Libya

Saturday

Sunday

 Reports

  • Egypt: Tug of war over compensation Suez Canal compensation. Karima Abdel-Ghani
  • Egyptian, Ethiopian churches clash over Deir al-Sultan in Jerusalem. Ahmed Gomaa
  • Turkish deputies who called Egypt’s Sisi a tyrant and murderer now members of Turkey-Egypt Parliamentary Friendship Group

Read

Twitter

Plus

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This Week In Egypt: Week 17-2021 ( Apr 26- May 2)

Top Headlines

  • Egyptian PM: Egypt will not give up a single drop of its Nile water share
  • Egypt and Sudan build pressure on Italian company responsible for building Ethiopia’s Nile dam
  • Egypt appoints Chargé d’Affairs in Tripoli
  • Turkey says better ties with Cairo could boost Libya peace effort
  • Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood expresses ‘gratitude’ to Turkey
  • Italian prosecutors ask judge to try Egyptian officers over Regeni murder
  • Egypt and US sign MoU to exchange military logistic support, services
  • Egypt joins international efforts, sends tons of medical aid to India 
  • Researchers discover a pregnant Egyptian mummy

Main Headlines

Monday

Tuesday

  • Egyptian PM: Egypt will not give up a single drop of its Nile water share
  • Ethiopia says ‘threats’ by Egypt, Sudan over GERD crisis ‘futile’
  • Egypt is working with IMF to draft medium-term revenue strategy targeting 2% GDP increase: Finance minister 
  • Egypt’s evangelical church to hold Easter mass without worshippers due to coronavirus outbreak
  • Russian flights resumption to boost Egypt’s tourism with $3 bn in revenues: Goldman Sachs

 Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

Sunday

Reports

Cairo entertainer and nightclub owner Badia Masabni, centre, with her troupe. Photograph: Courtesy of Lucie Ryzova

Good Read

From Twitter

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Podcast: Turkish parties show inability to come to terms with Armenian issue

Here is my latest podcast for Ahval’s Turkey Trends with Dr Aykan Erdmir on how Turkish parties show inability to come to terms with Armenian issue.

The Turkish Foreign Ministry has for decades spent time and energy to fight against similar decisions across the world. Several countries have moved towards recognition in the last decade, joining the growing chorus of calling the 1915 events a genocide. This can in part be attributed to decades of activism by Armenian diaspora communities worldwide, Erdemir said. There is an absolute lack of empathy in an average Turk for the enormous pain Armenian communities and individuals suffered, he said. In his view, this denial is more concerning than what word they would use to describe the events of 1915.

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This Week in Egypt: Week 16-2021 ( April 19-25)

Top Headlines

  • Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi holds talks with Egypt’s El Sisi during visit to Cairo
  • Egypt fires top railway official after deadly train crashes
  • Egypt, Russia to resume flights between both countries
  • Egyptian security kills three terrorists involved in executing elderly Copt in Sinai
  • Egypt’s Sisi receives coronavirus vaccine
Egypt’s Sisi receives coronavirus vaccine

Main Headlines

Monday

  • Egyptian security kills three terrorists involved in executing elderly Copt in Sinai
  • Egypt’s second deadly rail accident in a month kills 11

Tuesday

  • Egypt and Libya to resume flights; first direct one from Tripoli to land in Cairo Wednesday 
  • Egyptian prosecution orders detention of 23 people over fatal train derailment
  • Egypt fires top railway official after deadly train crashes

Wednesday

Thursday

  • Egypt to produce Russia’s Sputnik V
  • Sudan calls on EU to support its position in GERD talks
  • Egypt’s Sisi gives directives to provide full support to Libya
  • Egypt’s largest solar plant, Kom Ombo, receives $114 million
  • An OPEC fund is among a group of development banks providing $114 million of loans to build the largest privately owned solar plant in Egypt

Friday

Saturday

  • Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi holds talks with Egypt’s El Sisi during visit to Cairo
  • Sudan threatens legal action if Ethiopia dam filled without deal
  • Egypt’s Sisi told German newspaper Die Welt that security should not come at the expense of freedom
  • Egyptian health authorities sends medical backup to COVID-struck province south of Cairo

Sunday

Reports

  • Russia, Iran again promote alternative to the Suez Canal. Mohammad Hanafi
  • Miners seek gold under the desert sands after Egypt changes rules. Nadine Awadalla 
  • Terrorism in Ramadan drama: Patriotic cool Hani Mustafa 

Read

  • There is no Indo-Pacific without Egypt and the Suez Canal.  Mohammed Soliman 
  •  Lessons from Israel and Egypt’s lukewarm peace. Gabriel Mitchell 
  • Egypt moves to stop the bleeding on dilapidated rail network. Abdellatif el-Menawy

From Twitter 

Plus

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Podcast: Turkey and proxies will try to stop Libya’s upcoming elections

Here is my latest podcast Ahval’s Turkish Trends discussing Libya with Aya Burweila, a senior adviser at the Research Institute for European and American Studies and a BBC Expert Woman in Terrorism and Radicalisation. Burweila said that Turkey and its Islamist proxies and forces in war-torn Libya will do everything to make sure presidential and legislative elections will not take place in the country as scheduled. She added that Turkey wants to keep the Syrian mercenaries it deployed in Libya as an insurance policy to both provide security for loyalist Libyan politicians as well as put pressure on the Tripoli government to do what it want.

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Podcast: Turkey and Egypt- A discussion with Steven Cook

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu announced the beginning of a new era in the relations between Egypt and Turkey this week. Egypt’s lukewarm response to apparent olive branches from Turkey, on the other hand, has raised questions on the success of this proposed reset by Ankara.

It was a pleasure to speak with Middle East expert Steven A. Cook, in a podcast with of Turkish Trends on Turkey and Egypt.

Cook, a senior research fellow for the Middle East and North Africa at the Council on Foreign Relations, said Egypt was in the driving seat in the reconciliation process, and thus far, Egyptian officials had not been satisfied with Ankara’s performance. He added said that in order for countries to mend ties, there were a number of Egyptian demands that Ankara needed to meet.

Cook said Egypt was taking a hard line against the Turkish presence in Libya in much the same way Greece was doing against a maritime agreement between Ankara and the administration in Tripoli. The deal, signed in November 2019, grants Turkey access to Libyan waters, cutting across territory claimed by Athens. Libyans must be worried about the prospects that Turkey is abandoning them, Cook concluded.

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This Week in Egypt: Week 15-2021 ( April 12-18)

Top headlines

  • Egypt joins Gulf region’s combined maritime forces led by US
  • Suez Canal receives giant dredger in planned upgrade
  • Turkish foreign minister says new period starting in Egypt ties
  • Greece FM Nikos Dendias visits Egypt
  • Ethiopia will carry out the second filling of its disputed Nile dam during heavy rainfall months of July
  • Eleven dead, 98 injured after train derails in Egypt
  • Egypt releases journalist Khaled Dawoud from prison 
  • Egyptians celebrate more normal Ramadan despite COVID worriesAlbert Arie, one of remaining Jews in Egypt, dies at age 91

Main Headlines 

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

  • Egypt joins Gulf region’s combined maritime forces led by US
  • Turkey to send delegation to Egypt in May, foreign ministers to meet later
  • President Sisi supports Italian energy company Eni expanding its operations in Egypt

Friday

Saturday

  • Ethiopia says ‘politicisation’ of GERD crisis will not lead to win-win outcome
  • Suez Canal receives giant dredger in planned upgrade

Sunday

  • Ethiopia will carry out the second filling of its disputed Nile dam during heavy rainfall months of July
  • Eleven dead, 98 injured after train derails in Egypt
  • Greece FM Nikos Dendias visits Egypt

Interview

  • Sudanese PM urges Egypt, Ethiopia counterparts to attend summit on Nile Dam dispute

Reports

  • Egypt ramps up pressure on Ethiopia over Nile Dam. Jared Szuba
  • Egypt, Greece, Cyprus edge closer militarily, but may be risking face-off  with Turkey. Al-Monitor

From Twitter

Plus

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