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MPs debate citizenship, doubt sincere implementation

CAIRO: A suggestion to include a clause on citizenship rights to Article 1 of the constitution was fiercely debated in parliament last week. The amendment is one of 34 changes to the constitution proposed by President Mubarak in December. The move, observers claim, is an attempt by the ruling National Democratic Party (NDP) to prove …

Daily News Egypt

Inside The Middle East Diary

Beirut has been my home for ten breathtaking if at times terrifying years. Lebanon has been my story for even longer than that – twenty five years in all. It is where I first saw a dead body, that of an unknown man who had been shot during the Civil War in the early 1980s. …

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Dealing with unwinnable wars after victory has been declared

In recent weeks, Italy’s government fell after losing a parliamentary vote on the country’s troop deployment in Afghanistan, while the United Kingdom and Denmark announced that they were to begin withdrawing their troops from Iraq. Whereas the Bush administration is deploying an additional 21,000 American soldiers in that country, and is pushing for more allied …

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Hosni Mubarak's regime won't delete Egypt's bloggers

Abdul Karim Nabil, the 22-year-old Egyptian blogger sentenced to three years in jail for insulting Islam, and an additional year for “insulting President Hosni Mubarak, was not born when Mubarak came to power. It is at once sadly pathetic and oddly gratifying that Mubarak’s regime, which has ruled over Egypt for almost 26 years, felt …

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Libya won't attend upcoming Arab summit in Saudi, says FM

Associated Press CAIRO: Libya won t attend the upcoming Arab summit in Saudi Arabia, the Libyan foreign minister said Sunday, adding that the Arab world is not serious and that joint Arab action is dysfunctional. Arab joint action is marred by disorder, Libyan Foreign Minister Abdel-Rahman Shalqam said at Arab League headquarters in Cairo Sunday. …

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Hooked on Cricket

Fans in Egypt prepare for the Cricket World Cup Cairo’s cosmopolitan nature is to be on show again next week, when thousands of cricket fans descended from the former dominions of the British Empire tune into the Cricket World Cup being played on the islands of the West Indies. The Yanks had their turn last …

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Engage Iran through the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty

North Korea’s agreement to give up its military nuclear program was a huge success for the international community. Admittedly, the country’s dire economic condition and its urgent need for energy made the agreement venal in a way. But North Korea’s decision nonetheless demonstrated the virtues and efficacy of diplomacy, which brings us once again to …

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Turkey replaces the EU with a return to the Middle East

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan gave the cue for Turkey’s foreign policy priorities in this dual election year (first presidential then general elections) when he declared that Iraq had replaced the European Union as Turkey’s top priority item. The statement certainly reflected the legitimate concerns of most observers who assess that this year could be …

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Mai Ghoussoub returns to Beirut

I first met Mai Ghoussoub 10 years ago when she gave a lecture to my creative writing students. They were enthralled by this elegant, “cool and “awesome lady who was the legendary co-founder of Saqi Books in London. From that day on, I was blessed with a rare friendship that enriched my life in countless …

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The trials and tribulations of one Sudanese family living in Cairo

CAIRO: Sudanese police came to Atif Ismail’s home in the middle of the night many times. Repeatedly arrested and detained for days at a time, the geography and English teacher paid dearly for his political commentary on a Web site. “I was afraid, his daughter Aseil said. “It was a very scary way to live. …

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Ex-PM says Sudan rejects UN in Darfur as it seeks to win conflict

Associated Press CAIRO: The main Sudanese opposition leader says the government is refusing to allow UN peacekeepers in Darfur because it knows the UN troops would help hunt down war crimes suspects for the International Criminal Court. Former Prime Minister Sadiq Al-Mahdi said Khartoum s other reason for rejecting UN forces was that it still …

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Female parliamentarians at an alltime high but far from equality

Associated Press UNITED NATIONS: Nearly 17 percent of the world s parliamentarians are women, an all-time high but a long way from equal representation of the sexes in legislative chambers, the Inter-Parliamentary Union said. Anders Johnsson, secretary-general of the world organization of parliaments, said discrimination and stereotyping of women are responsible for their continuing low …

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Designing healthy babies

Manipulating embryonic genes to avoid disease Have you ever wondered what you or your children would look like with different colored eyes, hair or any other feature? More importantly, if you suffer from an inherited disorder, wouldn’t you wish you could save your offspring from suffering a similar fate? Recent advances in reproductive technology have …

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Saturday at St. Anthony's

In the barren expanse of the Eastern Desert, under the clarity of a seamless blue sky, lies a historic and often overlooked monastery. Although the monastery ranks amongst travel book highlights, its distance from better-recognized monuments has protected it. A gentle pulse in a desolate landscape, St. Anthony’s is the picture of serenity. Secluded, majestic …

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Israelis and Palestinians should ponder 'land for refugees'

It is now pretty clear that despite almost universally repeated incantations, the Quartet “road map is not going anywhere. In a way, it never was a road map, but a wish list; nor did it specify how to get from A to B. Above all, it put both Palestinians and Israelis in the unenviable position …

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Darfur's step forward, into the precipice

It was one of those moments during the Lebanon war in summer 2006 when newspapers were glimpsing the metaphorical light at the end of the tunnel. A friend turned to me and said, without realizing what he was saying: “Yesterday we stood on the edge of a precipice. Today we have taken a great step …

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Public, private and all the spaces in between

In a small, archetypal “white cube gallery, two artists opened a joint exhibit with resounding resistance to conventional space. But while the Mashrabia gallery space is standard by contemporary norms, the gallery breaks with Cairo’s modernist dominated, state-sanctioned art scene, giving room for perhaps more combative artistic expression. One can see why such fundamental conceptual …

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Crackdown on Muslim Brotherhood

The ongoing crackdown on Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood group has entered a new phase marking a new phase in the escalating confrontation between Egypt’s two main political rivals. It seems that the magnitude of the state’s aggression is almost comparable to that of the Nasser era. Their current effort to marginalize and isolate the Muslim Brotherhood …

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The ICJ applied too high a burden of proof on Srebrenica

The judgment earlier this week of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) concerning Serbia’s involvement in the massacre of Bosnian Muslims at Srebrenica in 1995 should be greeted with considerable ambivalence. On the one hand, the fact that an international tribunal has pronounced on the responsibility of a state in the matter of genocide is …

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British journalist calls for more communication between Europe and the ME

CAIRO: Veteran British journalist and Oxford professor Timothy Garton Ash delivered an urgent call for cooperation between Europeans and Middle Easterners on Tuesday night at the American University in Cairo. He sees the alienation of Muslims in Europe and the lack of interaction between the two regions as the major challenges facing this potentially beneficial …

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Environmentalist shocked at violation of Red Sea coral reef

CAIRO: The Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency (EEAA) allegedly gave a local council official in Hurghada a permit to dig approximately 1,700 meters into the Red Sea to lay the grounds for a new five-star hotel. Mohammed Shitta, the Secretary General of the local council of Hurghada was allegedly given the green light Thursday. On Friday, …

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Annual Career Mart advises AUC students

CAIRO: Two large white tents were pitched at the American University in Cairo (AUC) Sunday as hundreds of students crowded around tables for information about employment opportunities and career advice. “We attempt to open students’ options so that they don’t graduate with only one idea [one career option] before them, said Dalia Awad, advisor at …

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UN studies global warming at north, south poles

NEW YORK: The largest polar research program in 50 years, with a major focus on global warming, gets under way this week with United Nations support as thousands of scientists from over 60 countries prepare to carry out 220 science and outreach projects in both the north and south polar regions. The International Polar Year …

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Egypt, EU sign first twinning arrangements

CAIRO: The first twining agreements between the European Union and Egypt in the sectors of tourism and postal services took place Monday, Feb. 26 at the Conrad Hotel. The signature ceremony will be attended by Tarek Kamel, Minister for Information and Communication Technology, Zohair Garana, Minister of Tourism, and Ambassador of the Delegation of the …

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A political resolution won't save the Palestinian economy

The resignation of the Hamas-led government on February 15, and the expected formation of a new government based on the deal reached in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, between Hamas and Fatah may finally bring an end to Palestinian internal divisions and the internecine violence that followed last year’s stunning rise of Hamas to power. It may …

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The EU is wrong on the Palestinians

The European Union approach towards the former Palestinian government led by the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) formed in March 2006 was one of isolation; the EU and its member states refused dialogue, at least on an official level, and withdrew budget support. The EU intended to press Hamas into accepting the three conditions posed by …

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The world cannot afford to avoid a climate change revolution

The world is in the midst of a great political transformation, in which climate change has moved to the center of national and global politics. For politicians in persistent denial about the need to act, including US President George W. Bush, Australian Prime Minister John Howard, and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, there is no …

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