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Latest in Politics


Digitalizing homes

CAIRO: The home entertainment industry is in the throes of its most dynamic period of change, due to today’s “digitalization trend in homes of the future. Thanks to the currently heavily touted concept of digitalization bringing the notion that all home entertainment and consumer technology, from television, Internet and music to lighting and window shades …

Najla Moussa

Emergency Law leading to more instability

CAIRO: Opposition forces claim that following the extension of the Emergency Law security forces have been “harsher and “stricter in their policy. In response, some political and judicial blocs have organized a conference to combat the law’s “hegemony. Following the renewal of the Emergency Law, at least 70 political and human rights activists were arrested; …

Pakinam Amer

Israelis urged to leave Sinai after kidnap threat

JERUSALEM: Israel on Monday warned its citizens to leave Egypt s Sinai resort area immediately, saying there was a threat of kidnapping by militant groups. A message circulated to media and issued on the Web site of Israel s Prime Minister s Office counter-terrorism unit said the danger was imminent and called on its citizens …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Police detain four Islamists in Alexandria

CAIRO: Police detained four Muslim Brotherhood members in Alexandria, bringing to 70 the number of members of the Islamist movement being held behind bars, a spokesman told AFP on Tuesday. Four members of the Brotherhood were arrested at dawn yesterday (Monday) for their continuing campaign against the Emergency Law, said Ali Abdel Fattah, the Islamist …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Islamists galvanize political scene

CAIRO: Six months after shock electoral gains, the Muslim Brotherhood has injected new life into parliament, but some argue they have failed to propose a program beyond a systematic opposition to the government. On Nov. 9 last year, the Islamist movement electrified a political landscape atrophied by decades of one-party rule by inflicting stinging defeats …


Plunging Gulf markets hit Egyptian stocks

CAIRO: Egyptian stocks fell on Sunday as negative sentiment from plunging Gulf stock markets weighed on Egypt s bourse, hitting stocks popular with small investors and the housing and construction sectors hard, traders said. In the absence of foreign investors during Sunday trading, traders said local retail investors had sold in line with Gulf markets. …


Police work to identify Dahab suicide bombers

ISMAILIA, Egypt: Police are working to identify the remains of three men they suspect of carrying out suicide bombings in the Sinai resort of Dahab that killed 19 people last month, security sources said on Sunday. The men were part of a group of 25 people, including farmers and religious leaders, the sources said, adding …


Egypt median overnight interbank rate slips

CAIRO: The median overnight interbank rate on the Egyptian pound slipped to 8.075 percent on Monday from Sunday s 8.118 percent with demand for pounds low at the end of a period over which the central bank measures reserves. Bankers said they had met the central bank reserve requirement, which is measured over a two-week …


Dispute between telecom bigwigs

CAIRO: Orascom Telecom Holding S.A.E. (OTH) announced on May 4 that it will file a request for arbitration against Kuwaiti operator Wataniya Telecom (WT) regarding a material breach of a shareholder s agreement between the two operators. According to a press release issued by OTH, the Egyptian mobile operator will commence arbitration to enforce its …

Najla Moussa

All charges dropped against reporter

CAIRO: A criminal court has dropped the case against an Egyptian journalist sued by a judge for libel, a court official said Monday. The Giza Criminal Court on Monday dropped charges against Amira Malash, a reporter for the independent weekly Al-Fagr, and canceled the one-year prison sentence it handed her in March. Malash wrote in …


Government continues appeal of Bahai recognition

CAIRO: After years of oppression, the Bahai community in Egypt struck gold a few weeks ago after a court decision was handed down granting them full citizenship rights in the country. However, last week saw the Egyptian government say that they were appealing the case. “We were ecstatic about the case that allowed our community …

Joseph Mayton

Egyptian abattoirs accused of animal mistreatment

DUBAI: Radical animal rights group PETA is set to launch for the first time Monday a Middle East campaign to highlight alleged abuses in slaughterhouses in Egypt and several Gulf countries. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), best known for its aggressive stunts against celebrities who wear or promote fur, was to hold …


Desert village Pushes to become lush farmland

ALI MUBARAK, Egypt: It’s 11 am and Omayna Yousseff Abdel Aziz has already had a full days work. The bananas have been picked and left to soak up water from a running hose. The grapes are purple, not green and have been washed. She has visited the nearby supermarket which her friend Samia owns and …

Vivian Salama

Staalplaat Soundsystem a cure for your ailments?

CAIRO: If you’ve heard that there is nothing to do in Cairo, think again; exhibitions and culture centers are all over the city, offering vast entertainment catering to different tastes. If you are interested in trying one of the more unique ones, go for a Staalplaat Soundsystem treatment. At the Goethe Institute situated in the …

Farah El Alfy

Demands for judiciary independence dominate the news

CAIRO: The Judges Syndicate has decided to discuss the independence of the judiciary in a conference slated for May 17, reported Al-Masry Al-Youm. The conference is scheduled to include Egyptian journalists, parliamentarians, thinkers and law experts. The judges said they will plan ways to make the judiciary independent from the state, in an attempt to …

Pakinam Amer

Activists detained for 15 more days

CAIRO: As the detainees exited the courtroom Monday, they were heading toward a further 15 days in prison, when their cases will again be reviewed. The eleven activists had been arrested two weeks ago in the early morning at one of the demonstrations in support for the beleaguered judges. Over the past few days they …

Joseph Mayton

EU reiterates hard stance toward Hamas

CAIRO: European Commissioner for External Relations Benita Ferrero-Waldner reiterated the Middle East Quartet s three conditions for releasing aid to the Hamas-led Palestinian Authority, adding that the Quartet will explore an alternative mechanism for distributing aid that bypasses the Palestinian government during its meeting in New York tomorrow. Speaking at a press conference marking the …


Hezbollah should disarm: Jumblatt

CAIRO: Prominent Lebanese MP Walid Jumblatt said Sunday there was no justification for Hezbollah fighters to continue bearing arms because Israeli troops have long ago withdrawn from Lebanese territory. That s unacceptable, the anti-Syrian Druze chief told reporters in Cairo after a meeting with President Hosni Mubarak on the situation in Lebanon and ties with …


Police identify one Sinai bomber

ISMAILIA, Egypt: An Egyptian who blew himself up in an attack on a multinational force in the Sinai Peninsula was a 19-year-old student of Islam at a Cairo university, security sources said on Saturday. Eid Salman Mohammed Salim launched his suicide attack on April 26 on vehicles used by the Multinational Force and Observers. There …


DNA law on the move

CAIRO: A draft law that would make DNA testing mandatory and applicable in court cases for proving parenthood is now under final revision before parliament members cast their votes on it. The draft law was first introduced a couple of months ago by a number of MPs, including Mohamed Khalil Quoita. Following the approval of …

Sarah El Sirgany

Egypt still lags behind in ease of doing business

CAIRO: In 2004, 99 countries, two thirds of those featured in the World Bank’s prominent Doing Business report measuring the relative ease or difficulty of doing business in countries, introduced 185 reforms to make doing business easier and Egypt was one of them. The International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private arm of the World Bank …

Najla Moussa

Activists protest pre-trial treatment of detainees

CAIRO: Around 30 rights activists and Kefaya movement (Enough) leaders protested Sunday in support of Kefaya members, political activists and two journalists, temporarily detained at Tora Mazraa Prison near Cairo. The activists, who were encircled and cordoned off by security police in front of the Supreme Court, had initially wanted to attend the detainees’ trial …

Pakinam Amer

Mubarak welcomes Darfur peace agreement

CAIRO: President Hosni Mubarak on Saturday welcomed the signing of the Darfur peace agreement by Khartoum and the region s main rebel faction but urged the other parties to sign. Egypt welcomes the signing of the peace deal last night by the Khartoum government and the Sudan Liberation Movement (SLM), and calls on all Darfur …


Opposition says reform moving in the wrong direction

CAIRO: In this era of Middle Eastern politics, the Egyptian populace has responded in a flurry to last week’s decision to extend the Emergency Law, now in effect for a quarter-century. The move, which comes some eight months after Egypt’s first ever open elections since the dethroning of the monarchy in 1952, has threatened to …

Vivian Salama

Foreign minister calls for setting new dates for Mideast peace plan

CAIRO: Foreign Minister Ahmad Abul-Gheit said Saturday that new dates should be set for the U.S.-backed roadmap peace plan, which envisions a cessation of violence and the creation of an independent Palestinian state. Asked if he would propose amendments to the roadmap during an upcoming meeting of the so-called Quartet, which comprises the European Union, …


Egypt seeks methods to provide funding to Palestinian Authority

WASHINGTON: Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Jordan will press Middle East peace brokers to find ways to get funds to the Palestinian Authority despite a U.S.-led ban on aid for Hamas that they say could cause a humanitarian crisis. Diplomats from the three countries said their foreign ministers would push the case at a meeting on …


Hamas not interested in "secret ways" to transfer funds, it says in Cairo

CAIRO: The Palestinian Authority will boycott banks that balk at transferring money to its government because Hamas is in charge, Palestinian Foreign Minister Mahmoud Zahar said. Speaking after meeting Arab League officials in Cairo on Thursday, Zahar said a delegation from the Palestinian Finance Ministry was discussing with League officials suggestions and alternatives for transferring …


U.S. body criticizes religious freedom in allies

WASHINGTON: A U.S. government commission warned on Wednesday of rising religious persecution in Iraq and Afghanistan, two countries invaded by the United States in the past five years to free their people from tyranny and abuse. The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, in its annual report to Congress and President George W. Bush …


ACG cushions Gulf blow to stock market

CAIRO: Egyptian stocks slipped slightly on Thursday as negative sentiment from falling Gulf stock markets weighed on Egypt s bourse, but positive news from Arabia Cotton Ginning helped minimize the fall, traders said. They said the firm had set up a holding company with a paid-in capital of $1 billion with a United Arab Emirates …


Eleven candidates vie for third mobile license

CAIRO: Eleven candidates have presented bids for Egypt s third mobile telephone network license, Telecommunications Minister Tarek Kamel said Thursday. Eleven European, African, Arab and Asian groups, along with domestic companies, participated in the bidding, Kamel was quoted by the official MENA news agency as saying. Telecom Egypt and Telecom Italia presented a joint bid, …