This Week in Egypt: Week 49 ( Dec 3-9)

Top Headlines

  • Egypt says police kill two gunmen behind November attack on Coptic Christians
  • Italy names Egyptian police in murder student case Giulio Regeni
  • Egypt’s Sisi inaugurates Egypt’s first arms exhibition in Cairo
  • Egyptian court orders release of prominent Wael Abbas
  • Egypt and France’s Naval Group reach five-year maintenance agreement
  • Mediation between Egyptian and Ethiopian churches over Jerusalem’s monastery has failed
  • Egyptian prosecutors question actress Rania Youssef over revealing dress

 Main Headlines

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday 

Friday 

Saturday

Sunday 

 Reports

Good Read

From Twitter

 

Plus

  • Egypt’s growing population reaches 98 million
  • Egypt’s Sisi launches a risk insurance fund to encourage Egyptian investment in Africa
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This Week in Egypt: Week 48-2018 ( Nov 26-Dec 2 )

Top Headlines 

  • Egypt’s Sisi receives Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman
  • Giulio Regeni: Italy names Egyptian agents as murder suspects
  • Italian foreign minister summons Egyptian ambassador over Regeni murder
  • Internal ISIS documents sheds light on aid Hamas gave to ISIS in Sinai
  • Egyptian actress Ranya Youssef could face five years in prison for wearing revealing dress
  • Egyptian excavators have unearthed eight newly discovered ancient mummies inside limestone coffins
  • US clears Apache sales for Egypt

 Main Headlines

 Monday

Tuesday

  • Egypt’s Sisi and Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman confirm “depth of ties”
  • Egypt says it won’t ask for further funding from the IMF when its $12 billion program expires next year
  • Egypt launches first international oil and gas exploration in the Red Sea
  • Egypt’s FM heads to Khartoum for ministerial meeting on Libya

Wednesday

 Thursday

Friday

 Saturday

Sunday

Reports

Good Read

  • Internal ISIS documents sheds light on aid Hamas gave to ISIS in Sinai. Jewish News Syndicate
  • Sinai tribes in Egypt’s war on terror. Tahrir Institute
  • Did Egyptian secret agents torture cambridge student Giulio Regeni or was he set up? Barbie Latza Nadeau

From Twitter

Plus

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Social Islamism In Egypt

Egyptian actress Ranya Youssef is facing trial next month charged with public obscenity after she showed up at the closing ceremony of a film festival in Cairo wearing a see-through dress that revealed the entirety of her legs. This type of trial is fairly common, and it reflects a deeply embedded social Islamism within the Egyptian society. I re-blog a previous piece in which I tried to explain this sad phenomenon. Ranya has issued an apology, but it is unfortunate to see such enforced coercion. As I wrote, Social Islamism is Egypt’s silent killer. It garners fear, breeds intolerance, hinders creativity, and ultimately leads to radicalism. Despite the decline in the Muslim Brotherhood’s influence, other Islamist forces are still influential and are unwilling to abandon their coercive social doctrine.

Nervana

An English version of my original Arabic piece in Al-Hurra

Sheik Jackson movie

Amr Salama’s Movie’s Sheikh Jackson

In recent days, in Egypt, an Oscar-nominated film was referred to Al-Azhar, a crowd of Muslim worshippers attacked a church, and an actress became the focus of insults on social media for her comments regarding how Muezzins sound. These three incidents in Egypt over a span of weeks may seem unconnected, but they are linked. They all are alarming outcomes of a social Islamism that has infested Egypt and is increasingly bursting out in boils.

Egypt’s general prosecutor initiated an investigation against Amr Salama’s movie Sheikh Jackson after a “member of the public,” a Giza-based solicitor, submitted a complaint accusing the movie and its director of “contempt of religion.” This was put forth despite the movie being previously cleared and authorized by Egypt’s censorship committee. Rather than dismissing the complaint as nonsense and discharging the…

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This Week in Egypt: Week 47 (Nov 19-25)

Top Headlines

  • Egypt and Sudan set up joint patrols against cross-border threats
  • Court in Egypt upheld death sentences for nine people convicted of the murder of top prosecutor three years ago
  • Well- preserved Mummified woman dating back 3,000 years is unveiled in Egypt
  • Egypt’s Sisi calls on scholars to speed “tolerant teaching ” of Islam. Al-Azhar Grand Imam insists on importance of Hadiths

 Main Headlines

Monday

Tuesday

  • Egypt’s ministry of military production signs a deal with Slovenia’s Iskra on energy infrastructure
  • Egypt’s interior ministry allows 44 citizens to acquire foreign nationalities, relinquishing Egyptian nationality

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

 Saturday

  • A perfectly preserved mummified woman dating back 3,000 years is unveiled in Egypt
  • A report claims that ISIS affiliate in Sinai seizes Iranian weapons shipment bound for Hamas
  • Heavy rains create disruption, spark flood warnings in Egypt

Sunday

Good Reports

Good Read

From Twitter

https://twitter.com/mahmouedgamal44/status/1065553352975634432?s=21

 

Sport

  • Egypt’s Salah leads Liverpool to win over Watford with 7th Premier League goal

 Plus

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This Week in Egypt: Week 46-2018 ( Nov 12- 18)

Top Headlines

  • Egyptian police foil terrorist attack on checkpoint in North Sinai
  • ISIS Province of Sinai‘s latest video confirms the death of its former leader; features former police and military personnel who claim to have joined the militant group in Sinai
  • HRW: Mass arrests of Lawyers and activists in Egypt
  • Hamas and Egypt ensure a tone-down Friday’s protest in Gaza
  • Egypt has sentenced an alleged Islamic State supporter to death for killing an 82-year-old Christian doctor in Cairo
  • An Egyptian woman says she married Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi  in a religious ceremony in the United States this year
  • 41 countries to take part in Egypt’s first Defence Expo EDEX 2018

 

Main Headlines

 Monday

  • Egyptian police foil terrorist attack on checkpoint in North Sinai
  • Egypt’s Sisi arrives in Palermo for conference on the Libyan crisis
  • Former Menoufiya governor is sentenced to 10 years in prison for bribery
  • Former Egyptian football star Aboutrikais sentenced to one year in prison for tax evasion

Tuesday 

Wednesday

  • ISIS Province of Sinai’s latest video confirms the death of its former leader; features former police and military personnel who claim to have joined the militant group in Sinai
  • Egyptian parliament spokesman denounces comments by Kuwaiti MP about Egypt’s immigration minister
  • Egypt, US discuss boosting partnership in oil and gas fields

Thursday

Friday

Saturday 

  • Egypt has sentenced an alleged Islamic State supporter to death for stabbing and killing an 82-year-old Christian doctor in Cairo
  • Egypt’s Sisi attends funeral services for police officer hero Satea El-Noemany
  • Egypt PM forms committee tasked with preparing amendments for the NGO law
  • Egypt’s Armed Forces Chief of Staff heads to China for military cooperation committee meetings
  • Court adjourns Strong Egypt Party head Abul Fotouh appeal in terrorism listing case to January
  • 41 countries to take part in Egypt’s first Defence Expo EDEX 2018
  • Remittances from Egyptians abroad rose 20.4 percent year-on-year in September to $1.8 billion

Sunday

Good Reports 

Good Read

From Twitter

Plus

  • Buried treasure: Previously unknown stories by literary giant Naguib Mahfouz to be published
  • Echoes from the past: The voices of Egypt’s WWI soldiers
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Twitter Thread: The Washington Post, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen’s Houthis

The Washington Post has decided to publish an opinion piece by Yemen’s Houthi militia Mohammed Ali al-Houthi. That decision, however has triggered fierce criticism on Twitter. Here are few examples: 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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This Week in Egypt: Week 45 ( Nov 5-11)

Top Headlines

  • Egypt puts key members of ‘al-Jama’a al-Islamiyya’ on terror list
  • An Egyptian court has convicted 65 suspected militants of setting up a terrorist group and declaring allegiance to the extremist Islamic State group
  • Standard & Poor’s credit rating for Egypt stands at B with a stable outlook, but the agency warned of financial challenges in light of worsening debt crisis.
  • Lebanon’s minister of tourism apologizes to Egypt for insulting its cleanliness
  • Egypt’s headline inflation surges to 17.7 percent in October
  • Seven sarcophagi, some dating back more than 6,000 years, have been discovered south of the Egyptian capital
  • Egypt’s new ambassador to Israel Khaled Azmi affirmed Egypt’s commitment to achieving justice and peace in the Middle East

 

Main Headlines

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

  • An Egyptian military court sentences in absentia 8 ISIS members to death over 2016 deadly attacks on army checkpoints
  • A Church report contradicts state narrative about Minya attack
  • Egypt’s new ambassador to Israel visits Coptic Orthodox Church in Jerusalem following assault on monks

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

 Sunday

  • Dozens of cat mummies found in 6,000-year-old tombs in Egypt
  • Egypt puts key members of ‘al-Jama’a al-Islamiyya’ on terror list
  • Standard & Poor’s credit rating for Egypt stands at B with a stable outlook, but the agency warned of financial challenges in light of worsening debt crisis
  • Egypt court sentences two policemen to jail over detainee’s death
  • Egypt’s government is considering stripping ration cardsfor subsidized food from people who earn around double the average monthly salary
  • Egyptian parliament votes in favour of establishing Russian Industrial Zone in the Suez Canal
  • Egypt plans to ban gas-fueled cars by 2040, only electronic vehicles

Good Reports

  • Egypt treads carefully as a Gaza broker. France 24
  • Egypt deniesknowledge of Sisi critic’s disappearance. Ahmed Youness
  • Minya attack: Question marks surround the perpetrators of the Minya attack despite Islamic State claiming responsibility. Ahmed Eleiba
  • Egypt and Sudanmend fraying ties. Hagar Hosny
  • Sisi’s hot potato: Egyptians hit back after remarkson austerity.  Nadine Awadalla
  • Egypt struggles to restore Cairo’s historic heart. Emmanuel Parisse

Good Read

From Twitter

 

http://english.ahram.org.eg/News/315910.aspx

 

 

 

 

Plus

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Saudi Arabia and the challenges of Khashoggi’s murder

The brutal murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi has triggered dangerous repercussions for Saudi Arabia. Following the country’s formal admission of killing Khashoggi inside its consulate in Istanbul, Saudi Arabia has hoped the crisis triggered by his brutal murder will gradually de-escalate, but the future of the Kingdom and its Crown Prince is still murky, as he faces several challenges on various fronts. Here are four of them:

 

Saudi Crown Prince

Saudi Crown Prince Mohamed Bin Salman -Via the National

The Turkish challenge

In an op-ed published Friday in The Washington Post, Turkish President Recep Erdogan, in a clear hint to the Saudi Crown Prince, openly stated that the order to kill Khashoggi came “from the highest levels of the Saudi government.”

His strong words were in stark contrast to his earlier softer stance. It is common knowledge there is no love lost between the Turkish President and the Saudi Crown Prince. However, the fact that Erdogan opted to write publicly in the American newspaper on which Khashoggi served as a columnist, indicates that he failed to isolate his nemesis or drive a wedge between the Saudi King and his son, the Crown Prince, as was widely speculated.  President Erdogan clearly hopes public pressure will do what his quiet diplomacy failed to achieve.

However, the Turkish President’s words have triggered much criticism for his dualism: while Erdogan has exhibited a passion to achieve justice for Khashoggi, his own track record is flawed, with plenty of human rights abuses and attacks on press freedom. President Erdogan may seem stronger in the wake of Khashoggi’s murder, but the Turkish President is his own worst enemy. Sooner or later, his ideology and ego will sabotage his seemingly improved image.

The regional challenge

The Financial Times has published a report claiming Arab neighbours are hoping that the fallout from Khashoggi’s death “will lead the Saudi Crown Prince to temper aggressive policies that have unsettled the region since his ascent to power.” The report cited anonymous sources, including a “Gulf official” who expressed dissatisfaction regarding Saudi Arabia’s boycott of Qatar.

Undoubtedly there are deep concerns in some Arab capitals about the ramifications of Khashoggi’s murder, but evidence of a widespread desire to curtail the Saudi Crown Prince’s policies is hard to pin down. The Financial Times report seems to underestimate the close alliance between the Saudi Crown Prince, UAE’s leader Mohamed Bin Zayed, the Bahraini King, and Egypt’s President Sisi, and their collective agreement to counter Islamist groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood, backed by Qatar and Turkey. In Egypt, for example, TV anchor Amar Adeeb, who is regarded as close to the leadership of both Egypt and Saudi Arabia, did not hide his displeasure at the idea of a ​​reconciliation with Qatar, and appealed to Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Mohammed bin Zayed not to bow to external pressure.

Perhaps other countries such are not on the same wavelength as others, but their ability and, more importantly, their desire to counter the Saudi Crown Prince is not strong, to say the least.

The Western challenge

The Saudi Foreign Minister described the reactions after Jamal Khashoggi’s death as “hysterical”.  The uproar has succeeded in undermining the image of the Saudi Crown Prince in many Western capitals, and it would be difficult for him to embark on a Western tour any time soon.  A large part of this “hysteria” is a natural reaction to the atrocity of the crime. But the coverage of the case in the Western press reflects other reasons too. Khashoggi’s death came just a few weeks before the midterm elections of the US Congress, making the assassination an effective weapon in the hands of Trump’s opponents, who reject the rapprochement between the US President and the Kingdom, as Hussein Ibish highlighted in his latest piece.  In other words, the Saudi Crown Prince is paying a high price, not only for the brutal murder, but also for his cosy relationship with the current U.S. administration. A decisive victory for the Democrats will have a huge impact on US-Saudi relations.

Internal domestic challenge

Two important news items have emerged from inside Saudi Arabia: First is the return of the Saudi Crown Prince’s uncle and critic, Ahmed bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, to Riyadh. The New York Times, Reuters, and the Financial Times reported that the prince’s return had sparked speculation about his role in the Kingdom’s crisis management efforts following Khashoggi’s murder. Second is the release of Prince Khalid Bin Talal, a nephew of King Salman, who had been locked up for 11 months for criticising a corruption crackdown in the Kingdom.

n a Huffington Post article, Akbar Shahid Ahmed wrote: “Away from the spotlight, members of the Saudi ruling family and influential foreign governments are quietly debating the crown prince’s future.” He added “Though the Saudi royal family won’t allow the rest of the world to determine its choice of crown prince, they understand the expectation of a change.”

The return of Prince Ahmed and the release of Prince Khalid indicate that the Saudi Royal Family is embarking on some changes to counter the unprecedented storm it is currently facing. It is unclear, however, how this change will affect the future of the Crown Prince. It is worth noting, however, that in addition to the foggy political scene inside the Kingdom, there is also a very murky ideological affiliation. Some Saudi elites share Jamal Khashoggi’s “soft spot” for the Turkish model and Brotherhood-inspired Islamism. Those individuals are silent opponents who are probably working behind the scenes to undermine the Crown prince’s power

Another important factor observers occasionally miss is that more than two-thirds of Saudis are under the age of 30. Those younger generations may not necessarily be supporters of the Crown Prince’s aggressive policies or Khashoggi’s brutal murder, but, at the same time, they welcome the social transformations within the kingdom and fear the return of the old guard, with their socially conservative doctrines. Those youth are possibly the ones hoping the Crown Prince will survive the crisis.

Khashoggi’s case and its repercussions confirm that the killing of dissidents does not serve any regime, but turns into a weapon in the hands of its enemies. It also proves the futility of economic reforms without political reforms that support them and reduce the ability of a country’s opponents to undermine it

The curse of the Khashoggi murder may continue to chase the Saudi Crown Prince for years. In addition to the reckless crime, the ambitious prince has made a big strategic error in which he created more enemies than friends. No wonder those enemies united after the crime seeking his head.

The future of the Crown Prince, however, will not be decided in Ankara or Washington, but in Riyadh_____ even if more gruesome leaks about the crime continue to emerge.  Regardless of the Crown Prince’s fate, Saudi Arabia needs to transform the ordeal into a a new beginning, without bowing to Turkish blackmail, American pressure, or by reversing the Kingdom’s counter-Islamism policy, as the Democrats may wish to see. Instead, the Kingdom needs to learn the lessons of the crisis with much-needed wisdom, devoid of emotion and anger. With real internal political, social, and religious reforms, as well as transparency and justice for Khashoggi, the Kingdom can survive the storm. It is a tough journey, but it is not mission impossible.

 

An earlier Arabic version of this piece was published in Al-Hurra

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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This Week in Egypt- Week 44 (Oct 29-Nov 4)

Top Headlines 

  • ISIS terror attack kill seven Copts in a bus ambush in Upper Egypt
  • Egyptian security forces killed 19 Islamist militants from a cell believed to be responsible for an attack on Christians in Minya
  • Egyptian security forces kill 19 militants in desert shootout
  • Russian-made MiG fighter jet crashes in Egypt
  • Israel appoints its first female ambassador to Egypt
  • Egyptian court frees author of critical book on Egypt’s economy

 

Minya attack 2018

 Main Headlines

 Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

 Saturday

 

Minya attack 2

 

Sunday

Good Reports

Good Read 

  • A Theological Murder Mystery Is Rattling Christians in Egypt. Farid Farid

From Twitter

https://twitter.com/EgyptTodayMag/status/1058838626442903552

Photo Gallery

 Plus

 

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This Week in Egypt: Week 43-2018 ( Oct 22-28)

Top Headlines

  • Egyptian police kill 11 ‘fugitive terrorists’ in shootout in Western Desert
  • Egypt reaches agreement between Israel and Hamas to ease violence on border
  • Egypt’s Sisi heads to Berlinfor a four-day visit
  • Egypt has announced that news websites and other media outlets operating in the country must apply for work licenses
  • An Egyptian court listed on Sunday 164 Islamists as leaders of terrorist entities
  • Israeli forces assault Egyptian Coptic Monk  during Jerusalem monastery protest

 Main Headlines

 Monday

Tuesday

 Wednesday

 Thursday

 Friday

Saturday

Sunday 

Reports

 Good Read 

From Twitter

 

 

Plus

 

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