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Latest in Politics


Median overnight interbank falls after rate cut

CAIRO: A cut in the central bank s overnight lending and deposit rates pulled the median overnight interbank rate on the Egyptian down to 8.1 percent on Sunday from Thursday s 8.456 percent, bankers said. The central bank s monetary policy committee last week cut the bank s overnight deposit and lending rates by 25 …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Children of the quarries

CAIRO: When Ahmed left school at age 11 to work in the rock quarries near his village, he was happy to earn a little money to help support his family. But as soon as I went to work, I found it very hard, Ahmed, who is now 14 and still working the quarries, told a …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

The source of illiteracy

CAIRO: Egypt ranks alongside Yemen, Morocco, Sudan, Mauritania and Iraq as one of the least literate countries in the Arab world. Over a third of the population in these countries cannot read or write, with the illiteracy rate in Egypt closer to one-half. The economic impact of the absence of this fundamental skill amongst a …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Israel's denying entry to peace mission deserved harsh condemnation

The past few weeks saw the error in foreign news coverage of the Middle East come to life as an international group promoting peace journeyed throughout the region. The Breaking the Ice peace mission began their journey overland in Tel Aviv early March and has just recently ended the trek by planting an olive tree …

Joseph Mayton

Unfortunately, strangers on a train

I was on the evening train from Washington to New York, happily reading a book, when I overheard a sliver of conversation that would make it impossible to concentrate and remind me just what an uphill struggle it could be to be a Muslim in America, today. “And those cartoons! They get so angry about …

Daily News Egypt

Regional neighbors lash out at Mubarak over Iraq, Iran comments

CAIRO: Iraq and its powerful neighbor Iran were fuming Sunday over comments by President Hosni Mubarak, a major broker in Middle East politics, about Iraqi civil war and Shiites allegiance to Tehran The comments have upset Iraqi people who come from different religious and ethnic backgrounds and has astonished and discontented the Iraqi government, incumbent …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Life in the hot seat

Coaches of the Egyptian national football team have some things in common. They all make a lot of money, they don’t last too long on the job and they and their mothers are called all sorts of names when they string together a few losses. What brought up the subject was this week’s appointment of …

Alaa Abdel-Ghani

A weekend of polo

CAIRO: To most people around the world, polo is a glamorous, classic sport, a rare commodity that has a car and a Ralph Lauren brand named after it. What people may not be aware of is that the sport has a strong international presence, with Egypt being no exception. Last weekend, Abu Seir in Sakara …

Farah El Alfy

Egyptian, Israeli leaders announce plans to meet

JERUSALEM: Israel s Interim Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and President Hosni Mubarak announced plans on Thursday to meet as soon as the Israeli leader puts together a new government, officials said. Mubarak called to congratulate Olmert on his being asked by the Israeli president on Thursday to head a government after winning a March 28 …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

EFG eyes Jordan, hopes for Saudi license in 2006

Head: EFG eyes Jordan, hopes for Saudi license in 2006 DUBAI: Egypt s EFG-Hermes Holdings is looking at Jordan as the next step in its regional expansion drive and hopes to win a Saudi investment banking license this year, a senior company official said. The Cairo-based investment bank already has operations in the Gulf Arab …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Egypt finds clue to ancient temple's secret

Head: Egypt finds clue to ancient temple s secret CAIRO: An Egyptian archeological team has discovered a series of structures in the southwestern town of Fayoum that could yield vital data as to how a Middle Kingdom temple was built, the culture minister said Thursday. Farouk Hosni said the structures included administrative buildings, granaries and …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

The rough road ahead

CAIRO: Privatization has become a bad word, a fellow journalist told me recently. No one wants to be associated with it. This reflects the popular sentiment following the sale of Egyptian American Bank and the ongoing bid for Omar Effendi. The latter, with some 6,000 workers, is said to be worth more with its assets …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani

Court gives the right for legal recognitions of Baha'I religion

CAIRO: Egyptians affiliated with the Baha i Faith are celebrating a legal victory after the country s Administrative Court ruled their religion can legally be recognized in official documents. The ruling stems from a 2004 lawsuit filed by an Egyptian Baha i couple after their children s documents were seized, allegedly by the Civil Status …

Vivian Salama

Two Egyptian children recover from bird flu

CAIRO: Two Egyptians have been discharged from the hospital after recovering from bird flu infection, a Health Ministry official said on Friday. The two sisters, aged 18 months and six years, had been in hospital since at least Sunday, when the ministry said blood tests showed they had been infected with the deadly H5N1 strain …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Recent fatwa against statues opens door to extremists

“Egypt is on the cusp of becoming a great nation. Let us not turn questions of jurisprudence into social issues, rather, let us work together to form the mind of a new generation. With these words, Dr. Ali Gomaa, the Grand Mufti of Egypt, concluded his segment of the March 28th episode of the Egyptian …

Daily News Egypt

Egyptian author speaks on Arab image in the West

CAIRO: One of Egypt’s most renowned writers, Ahdaf Soueif, spoke at the American University in Cairo (AUC) Thursday night. The famed writer discussed the importance of understanding how the west portrays Arabs in fiction, and her discussion was met with enthusiasm in a packed auditorium on campus. “The portrayal of Arabs in the west is …

Joseph Mayton

Aftermath of a wedding

Thank you all for coming to the thoroughly choreographed event that has announced to the world my union of four months with the sole heiress of the chocolate industry in Texas. Originally, when I started my gold digging career at the mature age of 50, I was told to go for the oil industry, but …

Nabil Shawkat

WWW World

War of wordshttp://www.bushflash.com/ Mohamed Ragheb This prescient pronouncement by the fourth president of the United States, James Madison (1809-1817) scrolls across the top of the home page: “If tyranny and oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy. The foreign enemy is of course Al-Qaeda, and the …

Daily News Egypt

Arabic e-books the real deal

CAIRO: A new form of information is storming through Egypt and the Arab world. It may be a few years away from dominating the industry, but Arabic e-book publishing is starting to make a direct impact in the world of literature and culture. Ramy Habeeb, managing director of Kotob Arabia, an e-book publishing house, has …

Joseph Mayton

Singapore's ST Telemedia, Qatar Tel partner for third license

Head: Singapore s ST Telemedia, Qatar Tel partner for third license SINGAPORE: Singapore Technologies Telemedia (ST Telemedia), a leading information-communications company, and Qatar Telecom QSC (Qtel), one of the Middle East’s growing telecommunications companies, announced their joint venture to bid as a consortium for the third Public Land Mobile Network license in the Arab Republic …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

The nanny: The essential luxury

ALEXANDRIA: When walking in sports clubs in Alexandria and Cairo, where members of Egypt’s “high society usually take their children for fresh air and sun, it is not odd to see women and girls of all ages and nationalities wearing white coats tailing the young kids. These women are called nannies, in reference to their …

Daily News Egypt

Monuments, deserts and beaches

CAIRO: There are many things Egyptians can look forward to with the onset of the spring season: ideal weather, outdoor cafes, a jump-start to the summer and an abundance of holidays. “Spring is one of the best seasons for travel, says Mohammed Al Rifai, director of sales at Eastmar Travel. “The weather is accommodating to …

Najla Moussa

Government's human rights body demands immediate end of emergency state

CAIRO: The government s human rights watchdog condemned police intimidation during parliamentary elections last year, saying in a report Wednesday that security forces closed off polling stations to voters. Egyptian reformers have criticized the National Council for Human Rights, formed in 2004, saying it gives only muted reports on government human rights violations. Elections in …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Dealing with Egypt's infamous traffic dilemma

CAIRO: As far as most people are concerned, the traffic problem in Cairo is an unsolved dilemma. This idea may be changing as a result of efforts by traffic police over the past two months. Many people have credited this change to General Ismail Al Shaer, the Ministry of Interior’s assistant who was recently appointed …

Daily News Egypt

Median o/n interbank falls to 8.45 percent

CAIRO: The median overnight interbank rate on the Egyptian pound fell to 8.45 percent on Thursday from 8.538 percent on Wednesday, toward the end of a central bank reserve period to measure banks reserves, traders said. The two-week period ends on Monday and a new one begins the following day. Banks try to meet their …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

More blame placed on ferry captain

CAIRO: The government laid more blame on Wednesday on the captain of the ferry which sank in the Red Sea in February with the loss of more than 1,000 lives. A cabinet statement said analysis of the recording of the conversation on the bridge of the Salam 98 showed the captain did not take any …

Daily Star Egypt Staff

Representing Egypt

CAIRO: As part of the ongoing effort to lure a record 16 million tourists by 2014, the Egyptian Tourist Authority (ETA) has paired up with private advertising companies to launch an aggressive domestic and international campaign showcasing Egypt as a leading destination. Under the auspices of Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif, Minister of Tourism Zoheir Garranah …

Vivian Salama

Coherent vocational training agenda takes shape

CAIRO: The shortage of properly trained staff is the most common complaint of industrial businesses. Policymakers and economists also cite the mismatch in the supply and demand for skills as one of the biggest challenges to the nation s economic growth. To address this issue, parliament passed a law in 2003 creating the National Fund …

Waleed Khalil Rasromani