Egypt Media Roundup – May 6, 2014

05/06/2014 . By TIMEP

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TOP STORIES

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Legal & Political Institutions

The Egyptian Court for Urgent Matters has banned the National Democratic Party, former president Hosni Mubarak’s ruling party, from running in the upcoming parliamentary elections.  The court stated its reason as being, “that the NDP issued legislations which contradicted the constitution and went against court rulings.” [AFP, AP, Daily News Egypt, Reuters, Ahram, Egyptian Streets, Aswat Masriya, Mada MasrRead More..

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Marginalized Groups

Following the alleged MERS deaths of two women who recently returned from the pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia, the Egyptian Ministry of Health denies that the women were infected with MERS upon their deaths. “The ministry’s statement affirmed that the medical tests conducted on the two women confirm the cause of their deaths to be entirely unrelated to MERS.” [AhramRead More..

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Security Sector

A pro-Sisi demonstration turned violent in the northeastern city Qalyubia’s Khanka. Pro-Morsi supporters threw molotov cocktails at pro-Sisi supporters, injuring one person and killing a student who was passing by the violence. [AhramRead More..

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Economy

Egypt’s Minister of Communication and Information Technology says that Egypt will need more than LE130billion to develop Egypt’s communications sector by 2020. He says, “the investment of the government will not exceed 15%, as the projects will mainly rely on the investments of private companies.” The investments are projected to offer 1 million job opportunities by 2020. [Daily News EgyptRead More.. 

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Foreign Relations

The African Union has called for support of Egypt’s “fight against terrorism” in order to “eliminate this phenomenon forever.” The AU Commissioner for Peace and Security recently discussed the matter with Foreign Minister Fahmy, as well as other continental matters. [Egypt SISRead More..

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MORE STORIES

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Legal & Political Institutions

 April 6 Youth Movement did not receive foreign funding, according to MOJ report–Mubarak organization and Salafist association received millions in Gulf funding 

Ahram:Report shows that Salafists, Mubaraks, not April 6 Youth Movement, receive millions in foreign funding

In this article: Excerpts from the Ministry of Justice’s report on foreign funding of NGOs has been published by Akhbar El Youm, which display the fact-finding efforts of two Egyptian judges who found that a Salafist organization received over $50million in foreign funding from two Gulf countries. The Salafist Ansar El-Sonna association received $30million from Qatar and $19million from Kuwait–which was approved by former social solidarity minister Ali Meslahi in 2011. The report also concluded that the April 5 Youth Movement had not received any foreign funding. An association founded by Mubarak also received donations from Oman and UAE until 2011.

 Sisi’s first televised interview–part 1, highlights 

Ahram: I wish I was Gamal Abdel Nasser, El-Sisi says

CNN: Egypt’s el-Sisi vows to finish off the Muslim Brotherhood if elected

BBC: Egypt’s Sisi vows Muslim Brotherhood ‘will not exist’

LA Times: Egyptian presidential candidate Sisi: Muslim Brotherhood ‘finished’

NYT: Ex-General Vows to End Brotherhood if Elected

Ahram: I support the protest law to protect the state, El-Sisi says

Ahram: The Brotherhood threatened me with foreign fighters, El-Sisi says

Daily Star Lebanon: Egypt’s Sisi says if elected army will have no ruling role

In this article: Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s first ever television interview introduced the presidential candidate’s electoral platform, officially, to Egypt. Sisi made mentions to many different areas of contention, mainly, he noted that the Muslim Brotherhood had threatened him during his tenure in the military, and that he will increase capacity of the army and police in fighting “terrorism”, Sisi also vowed to “finish-off” the Muslim Brotherhood if he is elected, in the country’s own interest. He said, “due to the challenges facing Egypt and the targeting of Egypt from inside and outside of the country … any responsible patriot has a duty toward his country and its future, and has the opportunity to come forward to protect this country, and this people, and their future.” Sisi also voiced his support for the controversial protest law, which he intends to keep because “irresponsible” demonstrations threaten the state.

 H.A. Hellyer discusses the “power game” of political actors in Egypt in the lead-up to the presidential elections 

Al Arabiya: Sisi vs Sabahi: This whole thing is boring

In this article: H.A. Hellyer writes on Egypt’s presidential election race’s loss of appeal due to the fact that everyone is convinced that Sisi will ‘inevitably’ come out as the winner. He quotes a European diplomat, who said “this whole thing is boring. No one is going to be able to make Sisi vs Sabbahi sexy.” Hellyer goes on to discuss the “power game” of the political actors in Egypt, and how they have strayed away from the goals of the revolution. Those who still seek to fulfil those goals are left “on the margins as a very small minority.”

 Sabbahi holds campaign rally in Mahalla–promises to fulfil the goals of the revolution 

Ahram: Presidential hopeful Sabahi vows to defend public sector at rally in Mahalla

In this article: At a mass election rally in Mahalla, presidential candidate Hamdeen Sabbahi rallied supporters, discussing his vow to fulfil the goals of the revolution by “developing the public sector, fighting for the rights of the martyrs’ families, and ending corruption.” He said, “The youth have to know that we can rebuild the country. The solution is in our hands. We the people insist on a country that is based on justice and is free of discrimination.” Mahalla is the site of many strikes and protests against deteriorating labor conditions in Egypt. 

Security Sector

 Security wall in progress along southern entrance to the Suez Canal 

Egypt building security wall at entrance to the Suez Canal

In this article: Egyptian authorities are building a security fence at the southern entrance of the Suez Canal due to increased security concerns over the past year. They’ve said that “this work is designed to further the security along the canal which remains under the protection of the Egyptian Armed Forces.” The work on the wall is at least 45% completed, according to the same source, and the wall is projected to be about 65km long.

Marginalized Groups

 Egypt’s Christian minority underrepresented in politics, facing injustice 

After Morsi, injustice persists for Egypt’s Copts

In this article: Egypt’s sectarian tensions have been a serious issue in Egyptian society. The ‘unionist’ tendency that “unified Muslims and Christians in early 2011 has also proved to be largely transitory.” The volatile political situation in Egypt has not favored the Christian minority, with sectarian tensions often resulting in violence. Additionally, “in the procedures following the violence, Christians are often forced to renounce their right to jsutice, and accept the result of so-called ‘reconciliation sessions’.” Egypt’s Christian minority is prepared to have greater representation in the government, and “the copts, too, have a duty to rely more on party politics for channeling their aspirations.”

Economy

 Egypt’s treasury bonds reached highest level in eight months 

Reuters: Egypt bond yields rise to eight month high in delayed announcement

In this article: Egypt treasury bond yields jumped to the highest levels in eight months at an auction late on Monday that was delayed amid speculation that bids had pushed yields too high for the government, which is facing a rising budget deficit. The average yield on five-year bonds increased to 13.460 percent from 13.076 percent at the last auction on April 8, while the yield on 10-year bonds rose to 15.436 percent from 15.069 percent. Rates have not been that high since Sept. 3, when the average yield on the five-year bond stood at 14.63 percent and the yield on 10-year bonds reached 15.96 percent.

 Vodafone investment of LE9billion to create 3,000 jobs 

Daily News Egypt: Vodafone to invest EGP 9bn in Egypt

In this article: Vodafone has announced that it will invest LE9billion in Egypt until 2017. The investments will create 3,000 job opportunities for Egyptians and aims to “revitalize the economy” according to a statement from the Egyptian cabinet. Vodafone expressed interest in continued work in Egypt, and “reviewed future plans for growth in the Egyptian market.”

Foreign Relations

 European Union Observer mission officially launched ahead of Egypt’s presidential elections 

Daily News Egypt: EU observer mission in Egypt launched ahead of presidential poll

In this article: The European Union announced the launching of its observation mission in Egypt on Monday.The mission is lead by Chief Observer Mario David, a Portuguese member of the European Parliament, according to a press release. “It is the first time that the EU deploys an Election Observation Mission to Egypt. We are here to observe the election and we will not interfere or supervise the process in any way,” said David.

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