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Latest in Politics


Egypt frees 950 former militants

CAIRO: Egyptian authorities have released some 950 detained former members of the militant Gamaa Al-Islamiya (Islamic Group) in the past six weeks, including 300 on Tuesday, police sources said on Wednesday. The Egyptian government detained many thousands of Gamaa members or sympathizers in the 1990s, when the group was waging a low-level guerrilla war against …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Better sanitation for Upper Egypt schools

CAIRO: “I am a toothbrush! yells a 10-year old girl role-playing before her classmates in the Upper Egypt village of Farshout. “I protect my teeth from cavities and I keep my breath smelling fresh! “I wash my hands, I wash my face, I wash my head and I wash my body, yells another girl, the …

Vivian Salama

Al-Sadr: Comments serve the enemy

BAGHDAD: The Egyptian president s claim that Shiite Muslims in Iraq and the Middle East are more loyal to Iran than their own countries serve only the enemy, Iraq s radical Shiite cleric Muqtada Al-Sadr said Wednesday. Such remarks serve only the enemy, and try to ignite civil and sectarian war, Al-Sadr said in a …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

The place I call home

CAIRO: Tamer Ezzat suddenly realized that most of his family and friends have immigrated or are thinking about leaving the country. An uncle in New Zealand; a cousin in the United States and another in Canada are but a few examples. Stepping out and looking at the bigger picture, he realized his case is not …

Sarah El Sirgany

Dow Jones launches Egyptian index

CAIRO: A new blue-chip index for top-performing Egyptian stocks has been established by Dow Jones Indexes. The creator of the renowned Dow Jones Industrial Average unveiled its latest index yesterday. The Dow Jones CASE Titans 20 Index will track the 20 leading companies on the Cairo and Alexandria Stock Exchanges (CASE) based on a common …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Love, war and redemption in the European Film Caravan

CAIRO: Film festivals have become a haven for us, the film fans, from the mediocre commercial films shown for the most part throughout the year on Egypt s big screens. The number of film festivals has been on the rise in recent years, and the unexpected and overwhelming success of the European Film Festival in …

Joseph Fahim

New cement plant to be built in Aswan

CAIRO: The Egyptian General Authority for Industrial Development (GAID) has approved a proposal by Qena Cement Company to build a new cement plant in Aswan with an investment worth LE 570 million. The authority has allocated one million square meters for the construction of the plant. Misr Cement Company (Qena), founded in 1997 by the …

Najla Moussa

Iraq says no to Cairo following Mubarak's comments

BAGHDAD: Iraq has decided not to participate in a meeting of Arab foreign ministers in Cairo because of comments by the Egyptian president questioning the loyalty of Shiites, Prime Minister Ibrahim Al-Jaafari said Tuesday. We have taken a decision not to participate in the conference Wednesday, Al-Jaafari said after criticizing President Hosni Mubarak s comments …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Administration scolds Mubarak, says Iraq is not in a civil war

WASHINGTON: The Bush administration rejected Monday assertions by President Hosni Mubarak, a close Arab ally; Iraq is descending into civil war. That s not our assessment, State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said. We don t share that assessment. Mubarak said in a television interview Saturday that civil war has almost started in Iraq and an …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Hijab double standards too often strikes home

CAIRO: Every now and then news comes along that a government outside the Middle East decides to ban the hijab (Islamic veil) in some form or another. Protesting such decisions on the streets in Middle Eastern cities has become a regular reaction to such news. Gradually, the anger over the hijab ban has grown to …

Sarah El Sirgany

Piraeus Bank dismisses rights issue report

ATHENS: Piraeus Bank, Greece s fifth largest lender, on Tuesday dismissed a press report that it is planning a large rights issue to fund the acquisition of banks in Egypt and Greece. At this moment, there is no deal or negotiations to buy a bank in Greece or in Egypt, as the press report claims. …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Leading Italian designers consider producing in Egypt

CAIRO: Executives of the four prominent Italian fashion houses Valentino, Marzotto, Ferragamo and Ermenegildo Zegna, visited Egypt yesterday to investigate the possibility of manufacturing their brands with local producers. A cautious Michele Norsa, Valentino s chief executive officer, described his company s plans to produce over 100,000 suits annually in Egypt at a press conference …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Twelfth case of bird flu in humans reported

CAIRO: Egypt has found its 12th case of human bird flu, Health and Population Minister Hatem El-Gabaly said in comments published late on Monday. The latest case was an 18-year-old woman from a province north of Cairo who caught the virus after handling infected birds, the state MENA news agency quoted Gabaly and ministry officials …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Contrived outrage over Mubarak's "civil war" comment

Amazingly, the Egyptian President has managed the impossible, and it only took a matter of minutes. Eat your heart out Condi and Jack! Hosni Mubarak has actually succeeded in uniting members of the Iraqi government-in-waiting with his civil war comments on Dubai s Al-Arabiya network. In fact, in comparison to top Iraqi officials, who have …

Daily News Egypt

Showcasing Ashoura

CAIRO: “It’s a true definition of humanity; the bringing of morbidity to a new level, a façade to our inner souls. Minou is a very talented woman on a wavelength that needs to be in New York and Paris, says Lamia Hamdy, a business woman and an artist. Hamdy is referring to renowned graphic designer …

Farah El Alfy

Egyptian in Jordan cured of bird flu

AMMAN: An Egyptian worker diagnosed with the H5N1 deadly strain of bird flu at the end of March has recovered and left a hospital in Jordan on Monday, a medical official told AFP. The patient has completed his treatment. He has recovered and left [a] hospital, said the director of the Karak state hospital in …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Mubarak's comments make headlines around the region

CAIRO: President Hosni Mubarak’s comments regarding Shiite Muslims in Iraq sparked region-wide criticism, and independent newspapers around the region have been following up on the issue. A high-profile Shiite Saudi writer, Fouad Ibrahim, told the Associated Press that the president’s remarks are the engine which drives the whole region towards civil war. Definitely Iran has …

Pakinam Amer

Human rights organization holds talks with government

CAIRO: The American Human Rights Watch Organization, which is currently in Egypt holding its quarterly meeting, met with members of the Egyptian government on April 8. They discussed human rights in Egypt under the framework of political, economic and social reform programs. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as well as representatives from the Ministry of …

Najla Moussa

Latest attempt to license Al-Wassat fails

CAIRO: The latest attempt by moderate Islamist group Al-Wassat to obtain an official license for their party has fallen short. This is the fourth failed attempt by the group in 10 years to acquire a license, despite optimism from its founder that the group would succeed in their bid. The Political Parties Court, a semi-governmental …

Vivian Salama

Jailed politician stopped from writing-wife

CAIRO: Egyptian authorities have stopped jailed opposition leader Ayman Nour sending articles to his party s newspaper, Nour s wife Gameela Ismail said on Sunday. Nour, who came a distant second to President Hosni Mubarak in Egypt s first multi-candidate presidential elections, has threatened to start a hunger strike if he cannot send his articles …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Bird flu "expected to continue for some time"

CAIRO: Minister of Agriculture Amin Abaza said in February that he expected the country to be rid of avian influenza by the time the bird migration season ended in late March. Today, with the number of human infections having reached 11, including three fatalities, Abaza s prediction has clearly not transpired and the outbreak is …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Egyptian FM denounces Israeli escalation against Palestinian cities

CAIRO: Foreign Minister Ahmed Abul-Gheit on Sunday condemned recent Israeli raids against Palestinians and suggested they instead should focus on returning to peace negotiations. Abul-Gheit said the Israeli air-strikes in the Gaza Strip that have killed 15 Palestinians since Friday were a violation of international conventions. The time has come for the Israeli leaders to …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Will U.S. fiscal frivolity break the world's piggybank?

Here’s a big idea for the next U.S. Treasury secretary: Reform the International Monetary Fund so that it can help the world balance its checkbook, reducing America’s deficits and Asia’s surpluses, before there’s a financial crisis that hits everyone from Beijing to Boston. The leaks and rumors are flying that Treasury Secretary John Snow is …

David Ignatius

Saudi Shiite clerics slam remarks by Mubarak

DUBAI: A group of Saudi Shiite clerics and intellectuals have criticized remarks by President Hosni Mubarak about the loyalty of Shiite Muslims to their countries, saying they inflame sectarian strife. Mubarak said Shiites in Arab states, in most of which they are outnumbered by Sunni Muslims, were more loyal to Iran than their own countries. …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

It's Israel's system that makes peace so difficult

Before remarking on the meaning of Israel’s March 28 elections for Israeli-Palestinian relations, it behooves us to recall why Israel has such frequent elections, yet can’t install a government capable of resolving the Palestinian issue. The reasons are both Israeli and Palestinian in substance. At the Israeli domestic level, every Israeli government since 1988 has …

Daily News Egypt

Hamas wants Gaza connected to Egyptian telecom network

CAIRO: The new Hamas-led Palestinian government is considering connecting the Gaza Strip to Egypt s telecommunications network, communications and technology minister Jamal Al-Khodari said Monday. In the context of the separation from Israel, we are looking, with Egypt, into the possibility of connecting Gaza to the Egyptian telecommunication network, Khodari told Egypt s MENA news …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Egypt to host meeting of Arab foreign ministers on Iraq issues

CAIRO: Foreign Minister Ahmed Abul-Gheit said Saturday that Egypt would host a meeting of Arab officials next week in an effort to stop the spiral of violence in Iraq. Abul-Gheit said the Wednesday meeting of foreign ministers would focus on the continuing dangerous Iraqi internal events and would ask loyal Iraqis to work to stop …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Housing sector climbs on mixed Egypt bourse

CAIRO: Housing stocks climbed on a mixed Egyptian bourse on Sunday, building on a rally in the sector since mid-March, traders said. Housing stocks have been boosted by expectations of expansion in the sector. Medinet Nasr Housing and Development climbed 11 percent, United Housing gained 5.7 percent and Shams Housing and Development added 6.3 percent. …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Heavy fine levied in libel case

CAIRO: A Cairo court fined a female reporter from Rose Al-Youssef newspaper LE 20,000 for allegedly writing a libelous story concerning a top official in the Ministry of Culture. The daily sacked the journalist as a result, even though the latter vehemently insists her story was true. “They say they have protected journalists from imprisonment. …

Pakinam Amer