Egypt Media Roundup – May 12, 2014

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]


[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Legal & Political Institutions

A spokesman for the committee in charge of amending Egypt’s election laws said that two draft amendments will be announced tomorrow–one referring to exercising political rights, and the second will increase the number of seats in parliament by approximately 30%. [AhramRead More..

Gender & Sexuality

Although a sexual harassment law was approved by the Egyptian cabinet and just prior to that, a man was convicted for verbally sexually harassing a woman in Cairo, Egyptian women are skeptical that the new law will be effective due to lax police response to harassment and deeply entrenched social norms in Egypt. [CS MonitorRead More..

Rights & Freedoms

Two political prisoners in Egypt face serious endangerment to their health due to their prolonged hunger strikes. Mada Masr reports on Mohamed Sultan, an Egyptian-American who was detained for alleged ties to the Muslim Brotherhood last August and has been on hunger strike for over 100 days. He spoke of the conditions of prison at a recent court hearing, indicating that he may not survive to be present in court again. Al Jazeera reported on Abdullah Elshamy, an Al Jazeera journalist who has been held without charge since last August and has been on hunger strike for 112 days. Elshamy’s most recent medical examinations report severe organ failure, and Elshamy’s condition is life threatening. [Mada Masr, Al JazeeraRead More..


A group of lawyers has filed a suit against Egypt for allowing coal imports into the country. The case was filed against the prime minister and the ministers of industry, electricity, environment, and petroleum–citing increased health risks for residents residing near cement plants whose health has been affected by factories’ use of coal. [Mada MasrRead More.. 

Security Sector

During a press conference, Egypt’s Minister of the Interior, Mohamed Ibrahim, claimed that security forces have broke up 40 terror cells and arrested 225 suspected militants since April. Those arrested allegedly belong to the terrorist organization Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis, and its affiliate, Ajnad Misr, as well as “secret cells affiliated to the Muslim Brotherhood.” [AhramRead More..

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]


[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/1″][vc_column_text]

Legal & Political Institutions

 Sisi interview: totes stability over freedom, but claims he will step down if there are popular protests against his presidency 

The Guardian: Egypt’s Sisi says he will step down as president if people rise against him

Al Arabiya:Sisi sees Egypt situation better ‘in two years’

Al jazeera: Egypt’s Sisi chooses stability over freedoms

Bloomberg: Al-Seesi Says Egypt to Protect Poor in Overhaul of Subsidies

Channel News Asia: Sisi sees Egypt situation better “in two years”

In this article: In an interview with Sky News Arabia, presidential candidate Abdel Fattah al Sisi has reiterated his support for the controversial protest law, claiming that popular demonstrations hurts tourism and is detrimental to the country’s recover. he said, “the right to protest is guaranteed for all but we will not let the country be destroyed.” Despite his sentiments against protests, Sisi claims that he will step down if his presidency incites mass protesting. He also gave a two-year projected improvement, saying that Egypt’s situation will improve in two years “if things go according to plan.”

 Sisi campaign rally garners thousands of supporters, but Sisi not in attendance 

Washington Post:Egypt’s Sissi is a no-show at his own campaign rally, but most don’t care

Euronews: Al-Sisi supporters hold first presidential campaign rally in Egypt

In this article: Presidential candidate Abdel Fattah al Sisi held his first campaign rally, where thousands of supporters gathered in Cairo to celebrate Sisi’s candidacy. However, Sisi did not attend his own rally, a detail that did not seem to bother his supporters. Sisi did not attend his rally, according to his supporters, “probably for ‘security’ reasons.” “We are all Sissi. The Egyptian people already live his ideas,” said one supporter, Hassan Ibrahim, who added that he was 59, “the same age as Sissi.”

 200 alleged members of Ansar Beit al Maqdis charged with terrorism and violence Egypt charges 200 Islamist militants with bombings, other violence

Al Jazeera: Egypt charges 200 people with terrorism

PressTV: Egypt prosecutor charges 200 ‘militants’

CTV: Egypt charges 200 suspected members of al Qaeda-inspired group  

In this article: Egypt’s prosecutor general has charged 200 people with charges related to belonging to terrorist organizations. The defendants are accused of belonging to Ansar Beit al Maqdis, which the prosecutor calls “the most dangerous terrorist group.” They also claim that the defendants received military training under Hamas and in Syria. They are charged with “carrying out dozens of attacks that have killed policemen and civilians…102 are in custody while 98 remain at large.”

Gender & Sexuality

 Domestic Abuse in Egypt: “one of the most chronically underreported crimes worldwide, let alone in Egypt” 

Women under Siege: Exposing the secret of domestic abuse in Egypt

In this article: Reem Abdellatif writes on the stigma of reporting domestic violence in Egypt. She uses personal stories from her childhood and other Egyptian women to shed light on the difficulties women face knowing that domestic abuse is wrong, yet having cultural and familial obligations or obstacles to seeking justice. She says, “I never spoke about it publicly until now because I wanted to protect my father. That’s the way it works, especially when you live in a conservative Middle Eastern household that puts so much emphasis on honor and family pride. I didn’t want to hurt his reputation or get him in trouble with authorities. Some women worry about the well-being of their abusers because they are family members. They also fear the social stigma. In fact, domestic abuse is one of the most chronically underreported crimes worldwide, let alone in Egypt.”

Security Sector

 Alleged Free Syrian Army member arrested in Imbaba–carrying explosives and thousands of dollars 

Ahram: Security forces arrest alleged member of Free Syrian Army in Egypt

In this article: Egyptian security forces arrested an alleged member of the Free Syrian Army in Imbaba, northern Giza. Security forces exposed a several explosive devices and $30,000 US dollars, which the militant allegedly planned to use in terror attacks in Cairo and Giza around the presidential elections.

 Sisi’s Sharqiya campaign offices attacked by unidentified men 

Aswat Masriya: Unidentified attackers torch Sisi’s campaign HQ in Sharqiya

In this article: Presidential candidate Abdel Fattah al Sisi’s campaign offices in Sharqiya were  attacked by unidentified men, who torched the offices and destroyed the main gate and large portrait of Sisi. The men were not identified, and managed to escape.

 Gunmen shoot and kill policeman in Sharqiya 

Turkish Press: Policeman gunned down in Egypt’s Sharqiya

In this article: Sergeant Shahat Metwawli Ahmed was shot in the chest by unidentified gunmen while riding on his motorcycle in Sharqiya. Security forces are investigating the incident, and no group has claimed responsibility for the attack as of yet. 

Rights & Freedoms

 Egyptian teenager barred from leaving Egypt, MOI reverses decision 

Ahram: Egypt reverses travel ban on teenager inventor

In this article: A young Egyptian student, who was chosen to present his inventions at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair was prevented from boarding his flight in Cairo because of his recent arrest on charges of illegal protesting. Abdallah Assem was released on bail and is pending trial, and then later barred from leaving the country. The interior minister later reversed the decision, allowing Assem to travel to Los Angeles for the conference.

 36 Al Azhar students sentenced to prison for illegal rioting on campus 

Mada Masr: 36 Al-Azhar students sentenced to 4 years prison

Daily News Egypt: Egypt students jailed for 4 years over violent protests

PressTV: Egyptian court jails dozens of al-Azhar students

In this article: 36 Al Azhar students were sentenced to four years in prison for illegal rioting on Al Azhar campus last December. The students were also given fines of LE30,000 each. Students at Al Azhar University and Ain Shams University gathered over the weekend in protest of the verdicts, while security forces stood by–according to Al Masry Al Youm.

 Al Jazeera journalists’ lawyer: Al Jazeera lawsuit against Egyptian government could negatively affect the journalists’ trials 

Vice News: Al Jazeera’s $150M Suit Against Egypt Could Jeopardize Its Journalist’s Trial

In this article: Al Jazeera’s recent announcement that they will be suing the Egyptian government for breaching international law and the terms of a bilateral investment treaty with Qatar while Al Jazeera claims to have lost millions of dollars because of the government jamming signals and preventing broadcasting, as well as endangering the lives of their journalists. One of Al Jazeera’s jailed journalists’ lawyer, Farag Fathy Farag has said that the lawsuit may negatively affect the journalists’ trials, he said, “I wish that this action never took place, and if they wanted to do it, they should’ve waiting until the end of the trial.”


 Egypt signs deal with Norwegian company to import liquefied natural gas 

Ahram: Egypt reaches deal with Norway’s Hoegh on LNG import terminal

In this article: Egypt has reached a deal with norway’s Hoegh, which will supply a ‘floating terminal’ to be used to import liquefied natural gas. Egypt hopes to secure the terminal as quickly as possible to be able to import gas ahead of the impending summer energy crisis.

 Smart-card bread distribution test run in Port Said reduced wheat consumption by 30% 

Ahram: Egypt minister hails savings from smart-card system for bread distribution

In this article: Egypt’s supplies minister has announced the success of the smart-card system, claiming that since the implementation of the smart-card system for bread distribution in Port Said, wheat consumption has been reduced by 30%. The first stage of the project was rolled out in Port Said as a test for future widespread implementation. The minister said, “the amount of consumption dropped by 30%, which means wheat imports will be reduced by the same percentage and the demand for foreign currency will be reduced by the same percentage.”

Foreign Relations

 PM Mehleb stresses Egypt’s stance on the Egypt-Ethiopia Renaissance Dam dispute 

Ahram: Egypt-Ethiopia dam dispute ‘not a war’: Egypt PM

In this article: Egypt’s Prime Minister Mehleb has voiced that the Egypt-Ethiopia dispute over the construction of the Renaissance Dam is “not a war” during a visit to Equatorial Guinea. Mehleb stressed that the issue should be handled in the context of a “balance of interests” stressing that Ethiopia can produce electricity and Egypt can take water, as a compromise to building the dam.