EGYPT | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

EGYPT

Sep 30 10:22

EFF Stands With #SaveAlaa, Calls for Release of Alaa Abdel Fattah, Activist and Friend

By Karen Gullo

My conditions are but a drop in a dark sea of injustice. – Alaa Abdel Fattah, November 7, 2019, at State Security Prosecution

EFF is profoundly concerned about our friend, Egyptian blogger, coder, and activist Alaa Abd El Fattah, who has been jailed for more than two years at a maximum-security prison in Tora, 12 miles south of Cairo. Media reports have cited his attorney saying Fattah was considering suicide because of the dire conditions under which he is being held. The lawyer, Khaled Ali, said at a Sept. 13 court hearing in his case—to determine whether Fattah would continue to be held prior to trial—that his client spoke of the terrible conditions he faces. “I can’t carry on,” he quoted Fattah as saying.

Sep 28 08:14

Sisi threatens to deploy army against Egyptians who took over deserted state land

Egypt President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi threatened Monday to use force against Egyptians who have unlawfully seized state-owned lands or irrigation facilities over the past decades.

Sisi said police and soldiers might be deployed to reclaim the state properties, which includes lands and irrigation works.

Over the past three decades, farmers have taken over deserted land along the Nile which officially belongs to the state.

Sisi warned that this process will no longer be tolerated.

"The interior ministry…and if needed…the armed forces [will ensure] that all these [irregularities] made throughout the past 20 or 30 years… are removed within six months," he said in a commanding manner.

Sep 21 07:46

Egypt: Prisoners offered amnesty in exchange for PR appearance, says report

Dozens of prisoners in Egypt have reportedly been offered amnesty in exchange for participating in a scripted conference with President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi planned in Tora prison next month, a local independent publication reported on Sunday.

According to Mada Masr, three lawyers representing detainees in the Tora, Minya and Wadi al-Natrun prisons had been informed by their clients that officials from Egypt’s National Security Agency had reached out to hundreds of prisoners, offering early release should they agree to speak about incarceration conditions in a favourable light during the conference.

Dozens of prisoners have reportedly been transferred from Minya and Wadi al-Natrun to Tora ahead of the conference planned for early October.

Those allegedly scheduled to receive amnesty reportedly include Islamists and other political prisoners - amid longstanding accusations of a crackdown on political opposition under Sisi.

Sep 20 10:19

Opinion | Why is Egypt postponing the war against Ethiopia?

Marathon negotiations between Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia that spanned over 10 years dashed all hopes that had been placed on them in the face of the Ethiopian insistence on refusing to sign any binding agreement on the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

For many decades, Ethiopia has viewed Egypt and Sudan as seizing its right to the Nile waters, which has caused the poverty it has suffered from for a long time. It also believes that the time has come to act in what it believes of its ownership of the Blue Nile River.

On the other hand, Egypt sees “absolute Ethiopian control without agreements or restrictions as an existential threat to the Egyptian people.” Fears are rising about the destruction of the already meagre Egyptian agricultural area and the decrease in the quotas of water allocated for drinking, as Egypt relies almost entirely on the Nile River, which provides more than 90% of the country’s water needs.

Sep 16 07:58

Tomb of ancient Egyptian King Djoser who lived more than 4,500 years ago is restored to its original glory of stunning turquoise stones, hieroglyphic carvings and labyrinth of corridors

The elaborate tomb of King Djoser, a pharaoh who lived more than 4,500 years ago in ancient Egypt, has been opened to the public following 15 years of extensive restorations.

The structure - known as the South Tomb - is largely underground and includes a labyrinth of corridors, decorated with hieroglyphic carvings and tiles.

However, the pharaoh was not buried in the South tomb, but was laid to rest in the famed Step Pyramid nearby, which was built by his personal architect Imhotep.

Sep 16 06:34

Who do they think they are? Israel tells US to ease off Saudi, Egypt human rights

Israeli officials warned the United States not to hold Saudi Arabia and Egypt accountable for human rights abuses, or else risk driving them into the arms of China, Russia, and Iran. This would contradict President Biden and Secretary of State Blinken’s pledge to “put human rights at the center of U.S. foreign policy.”

Israel need not worry: despite his campaign rhetoric lambasting Trump’s fondness for Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman and President Sisi, since taking office Biden has made few efforts to pressure the Saudi or Egyptian governments on human rights. Washington did pause the bonanza of weapons sales to Saudi Arabia, but then allowed certain sales to go through.

Sep 15 05:32

Egypt: Rights groups unimpressed with Biden's new conditions on aid

The decision by US President Joe Biden to renew security aid to Egypt has provoked anger from rights groups, who have said that conditions attached to the donations do not go far enough in addressing the Egyptian government's abuses.

In a statement on Monday, US officials said new conditions would affect a share of the $1.3bn in American aid that is sent to Egypt each year.

After what was described in the Washington Post as "lengthy deliberations", US State Department officials and congressional aids said the government would be providing $170m to Egypt for counterterrorism, border security and nonproliferation.

Sep 15 05:31

Egypt: Jailed activist's appearance in court raises health concerns

Photos circulating of Aisha al-Shater, the daughter of a Muslim Brotherhood leader, have sparked concerns about her health among activists online.

According to local media, Shater appeared in court this week looking pale and unwell, leading many social media users to draw comparisons and highlight how she looked before her arrest.

Shater, a human rights activist who was involved in activities to support the families of political prisoners, was arrested in November 2018 in a wave of arrests that targeted around 40 human rights workers in Cairo.

Sep 15 05:04

Egypt Murders Its Citizens With Little Complaint From Washington

A celebrated ancient empire, Egypt was later ruled by other empires old and new. In 1952 the country went from monarchy to military rule. Until the 2011 Arab Spring explosion, which topped the Mubarak dictatorship, the armed forces kept control through military men turned civilian politicians. Two years later Egypt returned to military tyranny.

In 1972 President Mohammed Anwar al-Sadat flipped the country from Soviet client to American friend and soon made peace with Israel. Washington ignored his domestic repression and rewarded him with generous aid payments. The cash continued to flow to Sadat’s successor, air chief marshal turned President Muhammad Hosni al-Sayed Mubarak. He jailed opponents ranging from Islamic extremists to liberal democrats, with little more than formalistic criticisms from Washington.

Aug 08 06:17

Royal ghost ship rises: Egyptian pharaoh's 4,600-year-old solar boat that was buried next to his tomb in Giza's largest pyramid in the belief it would carry him to the afterlife is transported to grand museum

Egypt has transported the Pharaoh Khufu's intact solar boat dating back some 4,600 years to the country's soon to be unveiled grand museum, the antiquities ministry said on Saturday.

Solar boats were buried in pits next to royal burial chambers in the belief that they would transport the departed into the afterlife.

Cairo's Great Pyramid - also known as the Pyramid of Cheops - is the largest of the three Giza pyramids and houses Khufu's tomb, who was buried in 2566 BC.

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Aug 03 09:11

Egypt: Prominent blogger attempts suicide in prison

A Cairo-based rights group has condemned the treatment of a prominent Egyptian blogger following reports that he attempted suicide in Egypt’s notorious Tora prison.

The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) issued a statement on Monday condemning the crackdown on the blogger Mohammed Ibrahim, also known as ‘Mohammed Oxygen’.

According to the rights group, Ibrahim attempted to take his own life but was prevented in the last moments.

The rights groups said Ibrahim had been denied visits from his family since February 2020 and funds sent to him were restricted.

Jul 28 07:21

South Sudan’s Foreign Minister arrives in Cairo to discuss Ethiopian dam crisis

South Sudan’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Beatrice Wani arrived in Cairo, on Monday, as part of an official visit during which she will review the latest developments on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

During her visit to Cairo, Wani will also review strengthening the cooperation relations between her country and Egypt.

The minister will meet with a number of senior officials and dignitaries, as part of the joint higher committee meetings between the two countries. The two sides will discuss support for cooperation in all fields, and the latest developments in the regional and international arenas.

Wani had met with Egypt’s Minister of Water Resources and Irrigation Mohamed Abdel Atty during his visit to Juba in late June. The two sides held consultations on strengthening bilateral cooperation, convening the joint higher committee expected to be held during July in Cairo, and discussing the Ethiopian dam crisis.

Jul 23 08:33

Fragments of Ancient Egyptian ‘Book of the Dead’ Reunited After Centuries

Archaeologists have digitally reunited two fragments of a 2,300-year-old linen mummy wrapping covered in hieroglyphics from the ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead.

As Laura Geggel reports for Live Science, researchers from the Teece Museum of Classical Antiquities at the University of Canterbury (UC) in New Zealand had cataloged a 2- by 19-inch portion of the scroll in an online database. When employees from the Getty Research Institute (GRI) in Los Angeles saw photographs of the digitized wrapping, they realized that a section housed in their collections fit perfectly with the UC scrap.

“There is a small gap between the two fragments; however, the scene makes sense, the incantation makes sense, and the text makes it spot on,” says Alison Griffith, a classics scholar at UC, in a statement. “It is just amazing to piece fragments together remotely.”

Jul 19 11:59

Egypt’s national security is a red line that cannot be crossed: Al-Sisi

Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi said on Thursday that Egypt’s national security is “a red line that cannot be crossed, whether people like it or not. He reemphasised Egypt’s demand that Ethiopia and Sudan sign a legally binding agreement on the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

The Egyptian President statements came during the inauguration of the Decent Life initiative at Cairo Stadium.

“Let’s reach a legally binding agreement that will bring prosperity, security and peace to all of us,” Al-Sisi added.

He stressed that Egypt has the economic and military power to impose its will and defend its interests, adding that “We have several options and we will weigh them according to the circumstances.”

This is the first public mention of the Nile dam dispute after the United Nations Security Council meeting last week.

Jul 13 07:32

NATO Chief Meets with Egyptian, Israeli Foreign Ministers at Alliance Headquarters

NATO chief meets with Egyptian, Israeli foreign ministers at alliance headquarters

On June 12 NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg met with Israeli Foreign Minister and Alternate Prime Minister Yair Lapid at the military bloc’s headquarters in Brussels.

Stoltenberg praised Israel as “one of NATO’s most engaged and capable partners,” one of over twenty years’ standing, and a member of the bloc’s Mediterranean Dialogue military partnership.

He chose the occasion to hold Iran to account over its obligations under the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and its agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency, and demanded it “refrain from all activities which are inconsistent with the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2231 (on endorsing the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action).

Jun 15 05:53

Arabic press review: Egypt stands to lose 72 percent of farmland over dam

Egypt could lose as much as 72 percent of its farmland when the latest phase of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam is completed, according to a new study cited in the London-based Al Quds al-Arabi.

The study, conducted by NASA, the University of Southern California and Cornell University, finds that while the dam offers development opportunities for Ethiopia, the changing flow of the Nile River will lead to significant water deficits in Egypt.

Egyptian scientist Essam Heggy, who worked on the study, said that if the deficits created by the completion of the second phase of the dam's construction are not addressed with a joint agreement for water storage, he expects Egypt to lose up to 72 percent of its arable land.

The loss of water - which he estimated could be as much as 40 percent of Egypt's current water share - could see unemployment rates rise to 25 percent and the gross domestic product drop by as much as 8 percent.

Jun 11 12:08

USS Liberty Survivor Interviewed About Attack and Cover Up

American Journal host Harrison Smith conducted a powerful interview with survivor Phil Tourney about the deliberate and unprovoked attack on the USS Liberty on June 8, 1967 and subsequent coverup by President Lyndon Johnson. Tourney was onboard the intelligence ship, witnessed the attack by the Israeli military, watched the murder of 34 and maiming of 174 of his fellow Navy men, and was threatened to keep quiet or else he and his fellow shipmates would be imprisoned or even killed.-- Anyone trying to get the truth out about this shameful tragedy has typically been smeared as an anti-Semite.

Jun 08 10:22

Egypt: Dozens arrested in Alexandria after protesting forced evacuations

Dozens were arrested in the Egyptian coastal city of Alexandria on Friday and Saturday after hundreds took to the streets in the working-class Nadi Al-Seed area to protest the planned forced evacuations of their houses.

The residents of the poor neighbourhood protested after Friday prayers when they found themselves face to face with hundreds of riot police who accompanied several demolition crews. The demolitions have been halted due to the protests, but the residents who spoke to Middle East Eye remain on edge and accuse the government of not having a clear compensation plan.

One protester, a school teacher in his 40s, told MEE that the government wants to kick them out like they previously did with working-class areas in Maspero Triangle in Downtown Cairo, the Warraq Island in Giza and the Fustat area in old Cairo. All these places were demolished and the land was sold to local and foreign investors to build skyscrapers, shopping centres and entertainment complexes.

May 24 07:57

Egypt restricts support for Palestine despite brokering Gaza truce

Over the past two weeks, Egypt's official response to the escalation of deadly violence in Israel-Palestine has sharply contrasted with its crackdown on support for the Palestinian cause at home.

The Egyptian government played a central role in the ceasefire reached early on Friday between Israel and Hamas, after 11 days of deadly hostilities, which have killed 12 people in Israel and 274 Palestinians in Gaza, the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Egypt has also been vocal in demanding calm in the occupied Palestinian territories since the beginning of Israel's crackdown on the East Jerusalem neighbourhood of Sheikh Jarrah and inside the al-Aqsa Mosque earlier in May.

May 16 06:01

Egypt sends ambulances to pick up wounded from Gaza

Egypt sent 10 ambulances into Gaza on Saturday to pick up casualties of Israeli bombardments for treatment in Egyptian hospitals, medical and security sources said.

The ambulances entered Gaza at the Rafah crossing, which is otherwise closed for five days over the Eid al-Fitr holiday and the weekend and is due to reopen on Monday.

A further five ambulances have been deployed to enter Gaza later and three Egyptian hospitals have been readied to provide treatment, the sources and local health officials said.

May 16 06:00

Israel-Palestine: Egypt prepares for cross-border influx of wounded Palestinians from Gaza

Hospitals in Egypt's North Sinai, near the border with the Palestinian Gaza Strip, and Ismailia, near the Suez Canal, have made preparations to receive the victims of Israeli air strikes on Gaza, Egyptian government officials told Middle East Eye.

Israeli air strikes, ongoing since 10 May, have so far killed over 120 Gaza residents, including 31 children, and wounded over 900, according to the Health Ministry in the besieged Palestinian coastal enclave.

May 11 07:45

Egypt Reduces Compensation Fine Against Ever Given By $300 Million

Egypt's Suez Canal Authority (SCA) offered to drop $300 million from its compensation claims against the owners of the Ever Given containership, according to Egypt Today.

The Panama-flagged Ever Given containership, owned by Japan's Shoei Kisen Kaisha, blocked the Suez Canal for six days in late March. SCA initially requested $916 million in damages for the blockage and continues to impound the ship 30 miles up the channel in the Great Bitter Lake.

Here's the current location of the containership as of 0645 ET.

May 05 07:56

Egyptian delegation inspects Libyan airports to resume direct flights

Adelegation from Egypt’s Civil Aviation Authority is set to inspect several Libyan airports during the coming days in preparation for the resumption of direct flights between the two countries.

It was agreed to operate 35 flights per week from Mitiga, Misrata, and Benina International Airports to Cairo International Airport.

General Director of African Airlines, Khalil Al-Majma’i, said that a delegation from Libya’s Ministry of Communications visited Egypt recently, and held several meetings with officials from the Egyptian Civil Aviation Authority.

He said that the meetings with the Egyptian side dealt with arrangements for the return of flights between Libya and Egypt. They also reviewed cooperation in the fields of security, safety, transportation, air navigation, training, and the rehabilitation of Libyan employees working in the aviation sector.

Apr 29 08:28

Rare tombs from pre-Pharaonic era discovered in Egypt

Egyptian archaeologists working in the Nile Delta have uncovered dozens of rare pre-dynastic tombs dating to the period before Egypt’s Pharaonic kingdoms first emerged more than 5,000 years ago.

They also found tombs from the later Hyksos period (1650 to 1500 BC) when Western Asian migrants took over the country, putting an end to Egypt’s Middle Kingdom.

Apr 19 07:16

ISIS issues warning to 'Christians of Egypt' as they execute a captured Coptic and two tribesmen with gunshots to the head 

An Egyptian terror group linked to ISIS has executed three men including a Coptic Christian as a warning for supporting the country's armed forces.

Nabil Habashi Salama, 62, a member of Egypt's minority Coptic Orthodox Church, was shown being shot in the back of the head in a video released Saturday.

In the footage, a militant with his face blurred, an AK-47 slung across his chest and index finger raised to the sky, warns the 'Christians of Egypt' that 'this is the price you pay for supporting the Egyptian army.'

Apr 18 07:11

Egypt and Israel are Contemplating Alternatives to the Suez Canal

The now infamous blockage of the Suez Canal, along with the incident that nearly led to its repetition that occurred in early April, as well as a series of terrorist attacks committed by Israel against Iranian ships, has forced the international community to actively look for a possible alternative to this vital maritime transport artery.

Against the background of active discussion of the widespread use of the Northern Sea Route for the effective transportation of goods between Asia and Europe, Egypt and Israel joined their efforts in a bid to find a solution to the problems of the Suez Canal.

As the President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, said, the authorities of the country are working on establishing a “land connection” between the Red and Mediterranean Seas by building a network of ports and railways. He also added that the government is also implementing massive infrastructure projects, like the construction of the El-Arish port.

Apr 16 09:57

Archaeologists Unearth a ‘Lost Golden City’ in Egypt

A TEAM OF Egyptian archaeologists has unearthed what some describe as an industrial royal metropolis just north of modern-day Luxor, which incorporates what was once the ancient Egyptian city of Thebes (aka Waset). The archaeologists dubbed the site "the lost golden city of Luxor," and they believe it may have been devoted to manufacturing decorative artifacts, furniture, and pottery, among other items.

Apr 09 06:20

Egypt’s el-Sisi warns ‘all options open’ after dam talks fail

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has warned that “all options are open” after the latest round of talks between his country, Sudan and Ethiopia about a giant dam built by the latter on the Blue Nile ended without progress.

Delegations from the three countries met in Kinshasa, capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the current chair of the African Union (AU), in an attempt to break the deadlock in negotiations. The talks concluded on Tuesday with no resolution to long-running disputes about the operation and filling of the dam’s reservoir.

Apr 09 06:20

Egypt, Uganda sign security cooperation agreement as Sisi warns Ethiopia over Nile dam

Uganda and Egypt signed a military intelligence sharing agreement on Wednesday, Reuters has reported.

It comes as Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi warned Ethiopia regarding the controversial Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), saying there were "many Egyptian options to deal with the crisis" following the failure of talks in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Major-General Sameh Saber El-Degwi, an intelligence official, headed an Egyptian delegation to the Ugandan capital Kampala to sign the intelligence sharing deal.

Apr 08 06:20

Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam: 'All Options Open', Egypt Warns After Another Collapse in Talks

Ethiopia has long been deadlocked in a Nile dam spat with Sudan and Egypt, who fear that Addis Ababa's mega hydroelectric project will reduce their access to water.

Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has stated that all options are on the table when it comes to talks between Cairo, Khartoum, and Addis Ababa over a huge dam on the Blue Nile being constructed by Ethiopia.

The statement comes after the latest round of trilateral negotiations ended without progress in Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, earlier this week.

Mar 31 08:18

In stark warning, Egypt leader says Nile water 'untouchable'

Egypt’s president says his country’s share of the Nile River’s waters are “untouchable” in a stark warning apparently to Ethiopia, which is building a giant dam on the Nile’s main tributary

Mar 30 04:06

Traffic in Suez Canal resumes after stranded ship refloated

Shipping was on the move again late on Monday (March 29) in Egypt’s Suez Canal after tugs refloated a giant container ship that had been blocking the channel for almost a week, causing a huge build-up of vessels around the waterway.

After the 400m-long Ever Given was dislodged, 113 ships were expected to transit the canal in both directions by early Tuesday morning, Suez Canal Authority (SCA) chairman Osama Rabie told reporters.

He said a backlog of 422 ships could be cleared in 3½ days.

Mar 22 05:35

Egypt Prepares Move to Capital East of Cairo

Egypt is scrambling to complete a new administrative capital east of Cairo in time to receive its first civil servants by July, the government confirmed this week.

“The rate of completion of the first phase has passed 60 percent across all projects,” Khaled el-Husseiny, spokesman for the new capital, said this week. The Egyptian government plans to transfer its first batch of government ministers to the city by July and officially open the new administrative capital by the end of 2021 as part of a greater plan to alleviate congestion in Egypt’s nearby national capital, Cairo.

Mar 17 07:17

Egyptian military’s demolitions in Sinai ‘likely war crimes:’ HRW

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has denounced the Egyptian military’s ongoing demolitions and forced evictions in the restive North Sinai region, saying the practices constitute “violations of international humanitarian law” and likely amount to “war crimes.”

“Over the past seven years in North Sinai, the Egyptian army has unlawfully evicted tens of thousands of residents, destroying their homes, farms, and livelihoods,” Joe Stork, the deputy Middle East and North Africa director of the New York-based rights organization, said on Wednesday.

“The demolitions and evictions reflect an abusive official mentality that dismisses the well-being of Sinai residents, which is key to the region’s security and stability,” he said.

Feb 26 07:27

Washington Helped ‘Liberate’ Egypt. Today It’s An Authoritarian Dystopia

Adecade ago, the Egyptian people rose up against the Hosni Mubarak dictatorship. The so-called Arab Spring seemed to offer a bright future. Egypt went on to hold its first free election, elevating Mohammed Morsi to the presidency.

Alas, Morsi, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, overplayed his hand. Lacking control of the military, police, and bureaucracy, he failed to conciliate liberals, secularists, and religious minorities. In July 2013, barely two years after the Egyptian people freed themselves from one tyranny, they found themselves crushed by another, a military regime run by army commander General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and financed by Saudi Arabia.

Jan 23 08:27

Egypt: In shuttering a national icon, the government has unleashed rare public anger

Its metal is woven into the Aswan Dam and its name is welded into Egyptian public memory. But now Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s government plans to tarnish the Egyptian Steel and Iron Company’s lustre, and wind up the major state-owned firm.

The threat to the company, founded by revolutionary leader Gamal Abdel Nasser in 1954 and involved in almost all major development projects since, has caused wide debate about the Egyptian government’s policy of shutting down major public businesses for the benefit of army-owned ones instead.

Dec 22 07:31

Israeli submarine reportedly crosses Suez Canal in ‘message’ to Iran

Vessel said to have surfaced and faced Persian Gulf, in show of force amid threats over killing of nuclear scientist; in similar move, US sub crosses Straight of Hormuz

An Israeli submarine openly crossed the Suez Canal last week, in a show of force against Iran, the Kan public broadcaster reported Monday night.

The move was approved by Egypt, according to the report, which cited Arab intelligence sources.

Dec 04 10:48

Great Pyramid of Giza Was Built Differently Than Previously Believed, Engineer Says

The common quarry theory suggests millions of huge limestone blocks were transported from a location a few kilometres away from the Giza Plateau and assembled one by one by over 20,000 labourers.

Ancient Egypt's Great Pyramid of Giza appears to have been constructed using techniques that are different from what was previously thought, a structural engineer claimed after he looked into the "staggering" effort such a venture must have taken.

While most archaeologists believe each of 2.3 million limestone blocks the building consists of was first cut and then transported from a nearby quarry and pulled into place using a large external ramp, Peter James, who has been working on preserving the historic buildings and temples of Egypt with his company Cintec for the past 14 years, says, as cited by the Express, that the technique can hardly be put to practice.

Dec 03 08:20

Egypt: Amnesty condemns 'horrifying execution spree'

Amnesty International has denounced a "horrifying execution spree" in Egypt, saying dozens of people had been put to death in the past two months.

The UK-based rights group said on Wednesday that "in October and November alone, the Egyptian authorities executed at least 57 men and women", adding that this was almost double the number for all of last year.

"The Egyptian authorities have embarked on a horrifying execution spree in recent months… in some cases following grossly unfair mass trials," Amnesty's regional research and advocacy director, Philip Luther, said in a statement.

Dec 01 07:54

Why is Egypt intensifying its military drills?

After a busy November full of military drills, not least of which took place at sea, Egypt is continuing its training efforts into December and throughout 2021, sending a message about its global reach and capabilities.

“The increased number of drills shows that the Egyptian armed forces has the capabilities to conduct all these exercises at the same time,” according to Ahmad Eliba, a defense expert at the Egyptian Center for Strategic Studies. The exercises also show off Egypt’s strategic deterrence capabilities and weapons systems, he added.

Nov 12 11:43

Six Americans are killed in helicopter crash in Egypt's Sinai peninsula while serving with multi-national peacekeeping force

Six Americans were killed in a helicopter crash today while serving with a peacekeeping force in Egypt.

The six US nationals were among seven eight of the air disaster in Egypt's Sinai desert which also killed a French national and a Czech citizen.

A seventh American survived and was being medically evacuated.

Nov 01 09:00

Arabic press review: Egyptian photojournalist disappears after interrogation

Egyptian photojournalist Mohamed al-Rai has reportedly gone missing since Wednesday when he was summoned for questioning by the National Security Agency in Cairo, according to the daily newspaper Al-Arabi Al-Jadeed.

Al-Rai's family lodged complaints with the prosecutor general and the interior minister on Friday morning, alleging that the photojournalist was subjected to enforced disappearance for more than 24 hours.

On 26 October, the report said that security agents went to Rai's home to arrest him. But when they could not find him, they left a phone number so that he could call them back. A few hours later, the journalist called the authorities, and was told that he had been summoned by the security services.

Oct 26 06:26

Ethiopia summons U.S. ambassador over Trump comments in dam dispute

Ethiopia on Saturday summoned the U.S. ambassador over what it called an “incitement of war” between Ethiopia and Egypt from President Donald Trump over their dispute about the filling and operation of a massive hydropower dam.

Oct 13 06:35

Egyptian writer and Sisi critic Amin el-Mahdy dies days after release from jail

The Egyptian author Amin el-Mahdy died on Sunday, soon after his release from a brief detention, sources close to his family have told Middle East Eye.

Mahdy, 68, was a publisher, writer and critic of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.

He was arrested on 9 September after a Facebook post in which he described Sisi as “a murderer, traitor, coward, and thief”. He was released three weeks later on 30 September.

Sisi, a former army general, came to power after toppling his democratically elected civilian predecessor Mohamed Morsi in 2013.

Mahdy was opposed to both Sisi and the Muslim Brotherhood - from which Morsi hailed.

Oct 12 07:13

'Hidden Wealth of Saqqara': Discovery of 59 Mummies & God Statues Wows Egyptologists

Egypt’s Saqqara plateau, home to hundreds of tombs and nearly a dozen ancient pyramids, has recently entered the spotlight of an archaeological consortium after its well revealed some miraculous findings.

Archaeologists have uncovered 59 mummies in sealed sarcophagi and nearly 30 statues of ancient gods in the Egyptian necropolis of Saqquara in the last weeks. The find helped confirm “the hidden wealth” of the site and “its significance as one of Egypt’s most important and longest-lasting burial places for over 3,000 years”, according to the world’s leading Egyptologist, Salima Ikram.

“Saqqara is known as one of the richest necropolises of Egypt, with tombs here dating from c. 2,800 B.C. into the Roman era,” Ikram, a Distinguished University Professor and head of Egyptology at the American University in Cairo, told SYFY WIRE.

Oct 09 04:57

Egypt vexed by Israel, UAE plans for 'rival Suez Canal'

Warming economic ties between Israel and the United Arab Emirates have forced a wedge between Abu Dhabi and ally Cairo amid talk of plans to build a rival Suez Canal.

Around 10 percent of the global trade volume passes through Egypt's Suez Canal, the fastest shipping route between Europe and Asia.

The Suez Canal has remained a vital lifeline for the Egyptian economy during the Covid-19 pandemic, with maritime traffic and revenues actually having risen in the first four months of 2020 before taking a dip in the second quarter.

A burgeoning economic partnership between Israel and the UAE could threaten Egypt's important role in global trade, however.

Oct 07 06:55

Egypt releases jailed journalist Basma Mostafa amid outcry

Egypt’s prosecutor-general has ordered the release of a journalist days after she was arrested in the country’s south, amid outcry from international press freedom advocates.

Basma Mostafa, a freelance journalist, was brought before prosecutors on Sunday.

Sep 28 07:10

Egypt rocked by demos as protesters demand Sisi's resignation

Egypt has been the scene of mass protests against the government of President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi over the past week, with demonstrators defying heavy-handed police crackdown across the North African country and demanding his resignation.

The protests continued across Egyptian cities and rural areas for the seventh consecutive day on Saturday over corruption and deteriorating living conditions in the country, with protesters holding placards and chanting slogans against Sisi’s government.

The demonstrations, which regularly start after noon prayers, have over the past days drawn thousands of people to the Egyptian capital of Cairo, and the governorates of Giza, Damietta on the Nile Delta and Luxor in southern Egypt.

The rallies came a year after a limited protest movement was launched by Mohamed Ali, a prominent opposition figure and a former military contractor who accused Sisi’s government of wasting money on lavish construction projects.

Sep 20 05:18

Britain, France, and Germany Spurn US Plan for Iran Sanctions

Trump Administration officials have been saying this for weeks, but on Friday reiterated their intentions to try to enforce a UN Security Council resolution that includes broad sanctions against Iran. Officials say they expect every nation to comply.

The glaring problem with this is that the resolution doesn’t exist, at least not as an active resolution the US wants. The P5+1 nuclear deal gave the US the authority to reimpose sanctions on Iran, but the US had withdrawn from that pact years ago. Though the Trump Administration argued that didn’t matter, the UN has virtually unanimously rejected their interpretation, and rejected the UN Security Council resolution. The US believes the resolution becomes active Sunday, but the reality is it just doesn’t exist legally.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

These actions spell desperation on the cusp of madness, and the world is not following suit; so, what is next here, an invasion of Iran?!?

Considering just how "brilliantly" the other US occupations around the world are going, you might imagine it might just be time for a "re-think" on this; but of course, Israel's Bibi Netanyahu will not allow that to happen; he wants the US waging war against Iran, so Israel will not have to.

Sep 09 04:32

‘An unprecedented event’: More than 300,000 acres in Washington have burned since Monday

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee held a public news conference for the first time in two weeks on Monday. However, before addressing the coronavirus pandemic, Inslee focused on the wildfires raging throughout the state.

Aug 31 06:19

Egypt Claims It Will Prosecute 54 Million People for Not Voting

Egypt’s electoral commission said on Wednesday it would prosecute roughly 54 million people for not voting in a parliament election this month, Abu Dhabi’s the National reported on Thursday.

Just 14 percent of Egypt’s 63 million eligible voters participated in the election for Egypt’s upper house of parliament on August 11 and 12. A 300-seat chamber known formally as the Council of Senators, the upper house of parliament, serves “a purely consultative mandate, vetting draft legislation sent by the president or the legislature,” according to the report.

“One hundred of the chamber’s 300 seats were won by a ‘closed,’ pro-government list that ran unopposed” in the mid-August elections, according to the newspaper. “Another 100 [seats] will shortly be appointed by [Egyptian] President Abdel Fattah El Sisi, while the other third were won by independent candidates who are not critical of the government.”

Aug 02 05:54

Egypt Receives Advanced Russian Fighter Jets Over US Lingering Sanctions Threat

Ignoring the lingering threat of Washington sanctions, Egypt is moving forward with a purchase of large batch of Russian Su-35 "Flanker" jet fighters.

The first batch of Su-35's are now said to en route to Cairo this week, after in 2019 Egypt signed an agreement to purchase more than 20 Su-35 fighter jets from the Kremlin in a $2 billion deal.

The whole arrangement is awkward for the US defense establishment, given that it works so closely with the Egyptian military, and has done so for years going back to the Camp David Accords.

Jul 28 22:59

Harrowing photos show a hatchling turtle trapped in a plastic bottle among 12 TONNES of rubbish on an Australian beach

Marine conservation group revealed they cleaned up 12 tonnes of rubbish
It was the second time Sea Shepherd had cleaned Djulpan Beach, NT, since 2018
Images showed one turtle that died after becoming caught in netting
Marine animals such as turtles and crabs were trapped in plastic bottles

Jul 27 07:42

"The Nile Is Ours!" Ethiopia Tweet Outrages Egypt As Giant Upstream Dam Being Filled In

A week ago Ethiopia took the hugely controversial step of initiating filling the reservoir behind the 'Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam', further enraging Egypt which says the project will devastate its economy, farming, and ecosystem bound up with the Nile River downstream.

Ethiopia days ago added further fuel to the fire when the country's foreign minister tweeted in the national language, Amharic, that "The Nile is Ours".

Jul 27 07:38

Ethiopian foreign minister outrages Egyptians with 'Nile is ours' tweet, as US 'considers sanctions'

Ethiopia's foreign minister outraged Egyptians on Wednesday with a hubristic tweet claiming "The Nile is Ours", one week after it took a notable step in completing its controversial upsteam Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam [GERD] project.

Gedu Andargachew tweet read: "Congratulations! It was the Nile River and the river became a lake. It will no longer flow into the river. Ethiopia will have all the development it wants from it. In fact the Nile is ours!"

It comes amid reports that the US is considering sanctions against Ethiopia over its refusal to enter into a final agreement with Sudan and Egypt about the future status of the Nile.

Jul 24 03:56

Turkey Will Send More Troops To Libya If Egyptian Forces Breach Border

The Turkey-based Zaman newspaper quoted informed sources in the Turkish government as saying that a military and diplomatic plan has been prepared to deal with the Egyptian parliament’s decision to send troops to Libya.

According to their sources, the Turkish newspaper said that Ankara “is closely watching the consequences of the Egyptian parliament’s decision.”

Their sources stressed that if “Egypt sends military forces to Libya, Turkey has a plan to increase its forces and military equipment in Libya to stand up to the Egyptian forces.”

Jul 21 06:36

Egypt Authorizes Sending Troops to Libya, Risking Clash With Turkey

On Monday, Egypt’s parliament gave military junta leader Abdel Fattah el-Sisi approval to deploy troops abroad into neighboring Libya, following up a similar authorization from Libya’s Tobruk parliament, which is loyal to Gen. Khalifa Hafter and is seeking an intervention on their behalf.

This is the latest of Hafter’s several multi-year bids to take over Libya. A military dictatorship themselves, the Sisi junta has backed Hafter heavily, seeing it as a chance to install a friendly government on their border.

Egyptian airstrikes are common, but a direct ground invasion is hugely risky, because Turkey already has troops in Libya, and they are backing the alternative government in Tripoli. This looks tailor-made to be a proxy battle over Libya.

Egypt and Turkey have ideological differences, not just that Egypt is under military rule after a coup while Turkey’s coup failed. The two both have interests in the future of Libya, Turkey for the sake of oil and gas exploration.

Jul 13 05:07

Erdogan Boasts Turkish Military Intervention 'Saved' Libya From Haftar

Via AlMasdarNews.com,

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Sunday that Ankara’s stance in Libya foiled the plans of the Libyan National Army’s commander, Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar.

According to Erdogan, Turkey’s intervention saved the city of Tripoli from falling to the Libyan National Army (LNA) and their commander.

Erdogan continued in his interview with the Turkish magazine that “the Government of National Accord managed to get the revolutionaries out of Tripoli in a short time and these field gains heralded peace and security in all Libyan lands.”

He then boasted that it was ultimately Turkish military support to Tripoli, was had endured for much of the past year, that thwarted Haftar's advance:

“Turkey’s determined stance stifled the plans of Haftar and his supporters to occupy Tripoli.”

He said, “Strengthening Libya politically and economically will comfort North Africa and Europe.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Were I Erdogan, i would not necessarily "bet the farm" on boasts like this; only 6 days ago, Russia sent mercs to assist Haftar, who they are supporting
Russia sends more mercenaries to support Haftar in Libya

Also, if you read the tweet, from @NicAthens, at the bottom of this article, the following is stated:

"Following the airstrikes on the Turkish base of Al-Watiya, #Turkey officially announced that it will violate #Egypt's red lines and attack #Jufra and #Sirte, these areas control almost all of #Libya's oil fields, a regional war is expected."

I have to wonder just what Obama and Clinton would say, on the record at this point, about how their and NATO's military action "saved Libya" right now.

Jul 07 07:11

Millenia-Old Mystery Resolved: Fabled Ancient Labyrinth Reportedly Found in Egypt

Describing the way the labyrinth likely looked centuries ago, one researcher claimed that the discovery of the structure was "suppressed".

Archaeologists in Egypt have uncovered ruins which, over a thousand years ago, might have formed “the basis of the complex of buildings with galleries and courtyards” that were described as a labyrinth by legendary ancient Greek historian Herodotus, the Daily Express reports.

As the newspaper notes, the discovery was made in the vicinity of the so called Black Pyramid, some 90 kilometers south of Cairo, with the "foundations" in question first being found by Egyptologist Flinders Petrie back in the 19th century.

Jun 30 05:57

Senior Egyptian judge dropped from elite council after drafting anti-torture law

A senior Egyptian judge, who attempted to draft an anti-torture law, has been arbitrarily dismissed from the country's Supreme Judiciary Council, a legal source told Arabi21.

Asim Abdul Jabbar, the vice-head of Egypt's court of cassation - the country's highest appeals court - had been set to resume his membership of the seven member council in 2021 before his name was suddenly dropped off the list.

It followed an abrupt verdict by the judiciary's acting head, Abdullah Amin Asr, the source said, which appears due to Abdul Jabbar's efforts in making torture illegal.

Jun 30 05:56

Why Egypt is staying quiet on Israel’s West Bank annexation plan

Two weeks ago, Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman al-Safadi flew by helicopter to visit Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in his presidential palace in Ramallah.

His Egyptian counterpart, Sameh Shoukry, was also invited along. Photos from the event were meant to feature two of Israel’s neighbors at Abbas’s side. Both nations have fought multiple wars with Israel, both have signed historic peace treaties with the Jewish state, and both would reaffirm their commitment to the Palestinian cause and opposition to Israel’s planned annexation of parts of the West Bank.

Jun 24 03:46

Ethiopia’s Disinterest in Dam Negotiations Can Ignite War with Egypt

Cairo sent a letter to the United Nations Security Council requesting it to intervene in the dispute over the Great Renaissance Dam of Ethiopia (GERD). A hasty filling of the dam in Ethiopia threatens food and agriculture in Egypt and Sudan, and for this reason Cairo wants the UN Security Council to lend a hand in tripartite negotiations.

In its letter, Egypt’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs activated Article 35 of the UN Charter, which allows member states to warn the international entity of any crisis that threatens peace and security. Egypt’s Foreign Ministry decided to appeal to the UN after tripartite negotiations stalled due to Ethiopia’s “non-cooperative behavior.” The GERD, that Ethiopia has been working on since 2011, is to provide electricity for not only the whole country, but also its neighbors. The main problem Egypt and Sudan have with the Ethiopian project is the timeline to fill up the $4.8 billion dam with water.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This could get very nasty very quickly; hopefully, cooler heads will prevail, and water will be distributed equitably.

Jun 22 08:23

Sisi's 'Declaration Of War' Puts Egypt & Turkey On War Footing Over Libya

Egypt and Turkey have long been on opposite sides of the raging battle for the fate of Libya, with Turkey providing major military support and backing for the UN-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) in Tripoli, and with Egypt backing Gen. Khalifa Haftar.

The situation escalated over the weekend, amid a pullback of pro-Haftar forces from Tripoli after being defeated in the bid for the capital, when Egypt's President Sisi announced from an airbase near the Libyan border that the Egyptian Army stands ready to intervene in Libya on behalf of Haftar.

Sisi declared that if GNA forces attempt to enter Haftar-controlled Sirte, pushing deeper into central Libya, this would be a 'red line' for Egypt, forcing it's intervention. Crucially both Tripoli and its main ally Turkey on Sunday condemned what they called Sisi's "declaration of war".

Webmaster's Commentary: 

And where has the UN been for all these years, in allowing things to get so dire for ordinary Libyans, just trying to survive?!?!?

The short answer is, absolutely nowhere to be found.

May 21 11:29

What next for Libya in the face of Turkish aggression and floundering Arab allies?

Nureddin Sabir assesses what lies ahead for Libya as Turkey and its Syrian mercenaries force the Libyan National Army to retreat, and Egypt and the United Arab Emirates reportedly decide to abandon the LNA.>>

May 19 06:48

Egypt challenges US in acquiring one of Russia’s most powerful weapons

Russian media outlets have speculated the sanctions that the US might impose on Egypt in the event that it acquires the Sukhoi Su-35 fighter, as Washington has previously threatened.

Russia Today (RT) stated that it has now become known that the deal is about to be implemented despite the US’ previous threats to Egypt, made by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, that the implementation of this deal may render Egypt subject to sanctions, under the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act.

According to experts, the Egyptian army’s acquisition of the Su-35 Russian fighter will lead to a military imbalance in the region, as it is one of the most powerful fighter aircraft in the world, and it will guarantee the Egyptian army’s superiority over the other air forces in the region.

May 12 04:59

As coronavirus spreads in Egypt, Sissi sees opportunity to tighten his grip

CAIRO - Egypt's military-backed government is using the coronavirus pandemic to tighten its grip on the country, human rights activists say.

In recent weeks, authorities have ordered up punishments, including prison terms, for anyone they accuse of contradicting official accounts about the pandemic. Political opponents have been linked to the virus and targeted. And under coronavirus-related restrictions, political prisoners are more isolated than ever from the world as the virus threatens them.

On Friday, President Abdel Fatah al-Sissi approved amendments to the nation's emergency law, giving himself and security agencies additional powers. The stricter measures, the government claims, are needed to address a legal "vacuum" and prevent the spread of covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

But activists say some of the measures open the door to more abuses of rights and freedoms.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

It appears that Sissi has turned "gangster" as President, and now considers himself a dictator, running Egypt as his own personal fiefdom for himself and his cronies; this does not augur well for peace, either inside the country, or in the entire region.

Mar 10 10:15

Egypt forms navy commando force to attack Turkish ships off Libya

Egypt has launched a new navy commando force that will work with Libyan militants to block Turkish ships from delivering aid to the internationally-recognised government in Tripoli, Egyptian and Libyan sources have revealed.

Mar 08 06:08

Danger cruises: Dozens infected with Covid-19 on ANOTHER quarantined ship – this time on Egypt’s Nile

A cruise ship on Egypt's River Nile, carrying some 150 tourists and crew, has been quarantined and 45 people aboard have tested positive for the deadly coronavirus, country's health authorities have said.

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