Egypt Media Roundup – Apr 9, 2014

04/09/2014 . By TIMEP

TOP STORIES

Legal & Political Institutions

Trials against ousted president Mohammed Morsi, who is being tried on charges of conspiracy and jailbreak, are set to resume after a Cairo appeals court rejected requests to change the judge assigned to the trials. [Daily News Egypt, Ahram, LSERead More..

Gender & Sexuality

After the sentencing of four homosexual men to prison for committing ‘deviant acts’ and breach of public morality, Index on Censorship weighs in on the issue of sexuality in Egypt, saying, “the recent crackdown on Egypt’s gay community is highly reminiscent of the security clampdown in the spring/summer of 2010 when authoritarian president Hosni Mubarak was still in power.” [Index on Censorship

Security Sector

Libya has restricted border crossing between Libya and Egypt. The Libyan authorities at this time are allowing only the entry of food trucks and have prevented the entry of any other goods, which is causing crowding at the border. This restriction follows the recent kidnapping of 50 Egyptian truck drivers in Libya. [Aswat MasriyaRead More..

Marginalized Groups

The truce between the Arab Bani Hilal clan and Nubian Daboudiya tribe, which was brokered after fighting between the two families killed 26 and injured 56, has been extended for a month. Breaches in the truce will lead to military intervention. After the truce was negotiated, the government accused the Muslim Brotherhood of using the tribal fighting for political gain, stating, “attention is being drawn by some Muslim Brotherhood websites to security forces, and they’re using the incident to achieve political goals.” [Ahram, Mada MasrRead More..

Rights & Freedoms

Egyptian security forces arrested a man who allegedly works for Al Jazeera. Little information is known about the arrest at this time, and an Al Jazeera spokesman did not confirm whether the man arrested worked for the channel. [Reuters]  Read More..

Economy

The Egyptian environmental ministry and UNDP have launched a program with “the objective of developing a sustainable financing system for natural protected areas in Egypt.” This cooperation comes after Egypt’s decision to allow factories to operate with coal power, and Egypt’s impending energy crisis/fuel shortage. [AhramRead More.. 

Foreign Relations

After the announcement that the UK government would be initiating a ‘review’ of Muslim Brotherhood activities, the House of Lords has suggested that the MB inquiry could ‘discredit’ the UK, with the subtext of going after the group for more than security issues, but rather geopolitical ones, as the Saudi Arabian ambassador was leading the review. [BBCRead More..

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Legal & Political Institutions

Sisi presidential campaign announces launch of “Democratic Dawn Party”

El Badil: [AR] Sisi Announces Launch of “Democratic Dawn Party”

In this article: The campaign for Abdel Fattah al Sisi’s presidency has announced the launch of an official political party “Democratic Dawn Party” with the main platform of supporting the Egyptian people, armed forces, and police in their ‘war on terrorism’ with Sisi leading as future president of the country.

Mortada Mansour denies rumors that he’s running for president to help Sisi’s campaign

LATimes: Third Egyptian presidential candidate denies he’s running to help Sisi  

In this article: The latest presidential candidate, Mortada Mansour has denied rumors that he is running to put Sisi in a positive light and help his campaign. These allegations come after Mansour made several public statements declaring an outlandish political platform which included declarations such as banning social media, banning protests and strikes and imprisoning activists, abrogating the Camp David Accords, disallowing atheism and ba’athists, among others.

18 Muslim Brotherhood members given prison sentences for inciting riots, illegal assembly, thuggery, weapon possession

Ahram: Egypt court hands 18 ‘Muslim Brotherhood members’ jail terms for rioting

In this article: A Cairo court handed 18 Muslim Brotherhood members prison sentences for rioting and protests in July of last year. The 18 Morsi supporters were handed sentences ranging from 3-7 years for inciting riots during a demonstration in Cairo’s Shubra district last year. The defendants were also accused of illegal assembly, thuggery, and weapons possession.

Security Sector

Al Azhar University expels 27 students for violence and damage to campus

Aswat Masriya: Azhar University fires 27 students over violence

Egypt Independent: Azhar University dismisses 27 students for ‘leading protests inside campus’

In this article: Al Azhar University has expelled 27 students for their recent involvement in violence on campus. The university stated that their expulsion resulted from “acts that contradict the rules and nature of the university.” The students were also found to have damaged university property. The university has witnessed much violence over the past year, this March, 2 students were killed during clashes that erupted between security forces and Muslim Brotherhood supporters near university campus.

High Council of Universities to meet to discuss campus security after multiple security issues involving bombing and illegal weaponry

Egypt Independent: Ain ​​Shams University students arrested for bringing bombs and ammunition to campus

Ahram: Ministry of Interior : 12 handmade bombs found on Ain Shams University’s campus

In this article: The Interior ministry has stated that 12 handmade bombs were defused within the confines of Ain Shams University campus. The high council of universities is holding a meeting to discuss university security following the explosions at Cairo university last week, the finding of 12 bombs on campus, and the arrest of four Ain Shams students on Monday who smuggled three bombs on campus.

Multiple protests on Al Azhar University campus–security forces called in to disperse

Ahram: Security forces enter Al-Azhar University, disperse protesting students

In this article: Student-led protests on Al-Azhar’s campus led to security forces being called in to contain and disperse the protests. The demonstrations were held to denounce police violations and the targeting of female students outside of the university’s student housing. Another group of students gathered on Al-Mokhayam al-Dayem street chanting slogans against the army and against Sisi’s candidacy for president.

Marginalized Groups

Muslim Brotherhood issues statement condemning all violence

Ahram: Brotherhood releases lengthy statement condemning violence

In this article: The Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt has issued a statement declaring, at length, its condemnation of recent violence in Egypt. They state, “[The Brotherhood’s] activity and struggle against corruption and despotism is based on absolute peacefulness and the rejection of violence in all its forms and putting up with the harm, detentions, killing, torture and oppression [the group] suffers.” The Muslim Brotherhood reiterated their commitment to engaging in political life through legitimate means, and went on to say that anyone who engages in violence is at odds with the group. “The Muslim Brotherhood announces – clearly and without hesitation – that it is innocent of any form and source of violence and condemns all forms and sources of terrorism,” the group said.

Rights & Freedoms

Detained Al Jazeera journalist, Abdullah El-Shami, imprisoned for 8 months, on hunger strike for 77 days, health deteriorating

Ahram: Detained Egyptian journalist’s health deteriorating, warns family

In this article: Abdullah El-Shami, an Egyptian reporter for Al Jazeera, has been in detention for nearly eight months, and ever since his hunger strike began months ago, his health has considerably deteriorated. El-Shami was arrested in August 2014 on charges of violence and thuggery, and has been on hunger strike for 77 days. The US State Department has urged Egyptian authorities to released El-Shami and all imprisoned journalists.

Economy

Egypt’s new oil refinery will produce 2.3million tons of diesel per year, cutting imports in half

Reuters: New refinery promises some relief to Egypt fuel crisis

In this article: Egypt’s largest oil refinery, which will have the capacity to produce half the volume of diesel currently being imported, will begin construction next week. Reuters reports, “The Egyptian Refinery Company (ERC) plant, 20 kilometres north of Cairo, will use fuel oil produced by an old refinery nearby as feedstock to produce 2.3 million tonnes of diesel per year. It should cut Egypt’s reliance on imports of crude oil and petroleum products which have become a severe drain on the government’s scarce foreign currency reserves.”

Power outages could decrease to 1 hour per area block per day if Egypt receive full amount of fuel needed

Mada Masr: Electricity Minister says summer power outages will be limited to one hour

In this article: Egypt’s electricity minister has claimed that power outages over the summer will be limited to one hour per area block if the ministry is able to receive the full amount of fuel needed. The minister stated, according to Mada Masr, that “starting in June, three power plants would increase their production enabling the government to deal with the increased electricity consumption in the summer.” The minister also clarified that his earlier statement, that outages could reach 6 hours during the summer, was only if there was a 20% shortage in the fuel needed to run power plants and is still a possibility.

Foreign Relations

Abbas arrives in Cairo, meets with FM Fahmy ahead of emergency Arab League meeting

Ma’an News: Abbas arrives in Egypt for Arab FM meeting

Wafa News: Abbas Arrives in Egypt for Arab Ministers Meeting

Daily News Egypt: Fahmy and Abbas meet ahead of emergency Arab League meeting

In this article: Minister of Foreign Affairs Nabil Fahmy met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to discuss Palestine’s negotiations with Israel ahead of the emergency Arab League ministerial meeting this week. Fahmy reiterated Egypt’s “continued support for Palestinian leadership” with the aim of “reaching a peaceful settlement based on international principles and resolutions and the Arab Peace Initiative.”