Egypt Media Roundup – May 16, 2014

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Legal & Political Institutions

Egyptian embassies worldwide reported a high voter turnout on the first day of expat voting in the presidential elections–some figures reported between 87,000-100,000 voters. Turnout was reported to be particularly high in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Germany, Italy, France, England, and New York. [Ahram, Mada MasrRead More..

Gender & Sexuality

Sondos Shabayek, an Egyptian filmmaker, activist, and founder of the “BuSSy Project”, writes on finding a space for women and men to express the realities of life in Egypt. She says, “You can’t talk about sexual problems with your husband. You can’t talk about how your boss harassed you. You can’t talk about how the taxi driver grabbed your ass. And you can’t talk about wanting to have sex because this makes you a prostitute in the eyes of society. But a man can brag about his sexual adventures day and night in public.” [Open DemocracyRead More..

Marginalized Groups

Egypt’s two main trade unions in Cairo and Alexandria met and declared their support for presidential candidate Abdel Fattah al Sisi after signing a document pledging to suspend labor strikes until Egypt’s “road map” is completed. [Al MonitorRead More..

Rights & Freedoms

In yesterday’s eighth session of the Al Jazeera trials against journalists Mohamed Fahmy, Baher Mohammed, and Peter Greste, the court said that the three must pay $170,000 for a copy of the video footage being used as evidence against them. The defendants three lawyers, shortly after, quit the case, accusing the Al Jazeera network of using the arrest to tarnish Egypt’s image. [NYT, CTV, Middle East EyeRead More..


Egypt’s Finance Minister expects economic growth to increase to as much as 3.25% in the next fiscal year due to energy subsidy cuts that will counter the drop in foreign aid. [BusinessWeek, BloombergRead More.. 

Security Sector

Clashes broke out at Cairo University and Al Azhar University between pro-Morsi students and police forces. The students started a rally, and threw rocks and Molotov cocktails, which the police tried to disperse by firing teargas at the students. Other smaller pro-Morsi protests took place in haram, Mohandessin, and Omrania in Giza. [AhramRead More..

Foreign Relations

A group of African and United Nations human rights experts called on Egyptian authorities to comply with international and regional legal standards in light of the recent mass death sentences handed down in Egyptian courts. “Following the two mass trials, Egypt’s legal system is in critical need of being reformed, in line with international and regional standards,” stressed the nine UN experts, together with the Chairperson of the Working Group on Death Penalty and Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Killings in Africa. “A failure to do so is likely to undermine any prospects for long-term reconciliation and justice in the country.” [UN.orgRead More..

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Legal & Political Institutions

 A Breakdown of political groups stances on presidential candidates Sisi & Sabahi 

Ahram: Who will Egypt’s political groups vote for? A guide

In this article: Ahram breaks down all parties and groups that will be voting for either Sisi or Sabahi or neither in the upcoming elections. Voting for Sisi will be: Wafd, Free Egyptians Party, Nour Party, Conference Party, Tagamoa Party, the Tamarod movement, and the Nasserist party. Voting for Sabahi will be the Constitution Party, the Karama party, The Egypt Freedom Party, the Socialist Popular Alliance, the Revolutionary Socialists, the Egyptian Popular Current. Those boycotting the elections include: The National Alliance to Support Legitimacy, The Strong Egypt Party, and the April 6 Youth Movement.

 Gulf News: Egypt’s ‘civilian’ candidate woos voters in boisterous campaign

Ahram: Sabahi to hold rally in Alexandria

In this article: Presidential candidate Hamdeen Sabahi’s campaign trail has found its way to the Nile Delta, Alexandria, Cairo, and many more. At a campaign rally in Mansoura, Sabahi addressed the crowds, saying, “We are going to build a new, modern and progressive state based on social justice and human dignity.” Today, Sabahi  traveled to his birthplace in Kafr el-Sheikh to perform the morning prayer, and then traveled to Alexandria for a day of campaign rallies.

Security Sector

 Pro-Morsi supporters set police car on fire in Helwan 

Ahram: Protesters set police car on fire in Helwan

In this article: A group of protesters set a police car on fire in the Helwan suburb of Cairo. Allegedly the protesters pulled the policeman driving the car out of the vehicle and beat him while others set the car on fire. Al-Ahram reported that the attackers were protesting in support of ousted president Morsi at a nearby mosque.

Rights & Freedoms

 Anwar & Andeel: Egyptian political cartoonists speaking on daily life in Egypt 

PRI: Two cartoonists in Egypt push the boundaries of what’s acceptable and find a ready audience

In this article: Two Egyptian political cartoonists, known as Anwar and Andeel, have gained huge followings in Egypt since 2011. An Egyptian satire expert said, “[Anwar and Andeel] were some of the first artists to take on the Mubarak regime and learned all these tricks and workarounds. So by the time the 2011 revolution happened, and they see their cartoons as graffiti in Tahrir Square and they see their cartoons on placards at protests, they are revved up and they’re drawing a frenetic body of work that basically challenges all authorities, all political elites.” Both cartoonists worked for Al Masry Al Youm, but their cartoons were being constantly rejected so they turned to social media to publish their work. What makes Anwar’s and Andeel’s cartoons so popular is that they’re not overtly political. Instead they deal with daily life in Egypt, which can be quite challenging.


 Egypt Finance Minister: “We don’t exclude any tool that will help us finance ourselves” 

Reuters: UPDATE 2-Egypt could tap global bond market after political transition -finmin

In this article: Egypt’s Finance Minister says that it may tap into the global bond markets following the presidential elections, but if the country is in dire need of funding, it will seek aid from the Gulf countries that have been supporting Egypt financially for the past three years. Tapping global bond markets could be one option for raising cash, Hany Kadry told an investment conference. “We don’t exclude any tool that will help us finance ourselves. Our (credit default swaps) have come down quite significantly,” he added, referring to the cost of insuring the country’s debt against default.