Blog archive: Egypt

  • 27th February 2020
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Twenty-five new coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Arab countries since Wednesday's update – 17 in Kuwait, seven in Bahrain and one in Iraq. The latest tally of cases in the Middle East region is below, and this may be updated in the light of developments during the course of the day. Iran...
  • 25th February 2020
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Coronavirus cases have now been reported in nine countries in the Middle East. The outbreak in Iran is clearly the most serious in the region, and it may be more extensive than the official figures suggest. Elsewhere in the region the number of cases is small and no deaths have been reported so...
  • 10th February 2020
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    A 27-year-old Egyptian rights activist was detained on arrival at Cairo airport on Friday and now faces multiple charges: Publishing rumours and false news intended to disturb social peace and sow chaos. Incitement to protest without permission from the relevant authorities with the aim...
  • 22nd September 2019
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    The Egyptian authorities have issued a notice to accredited foreign journalists based in Cairo. Basically it seeks to restrict their reporting of demonstrations by demanding compliance with some rather bizarre "professional standards" -- presumably with the threat of expulsion if they disobey...
  • 21st September 2019
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Twitter announced on Friday that it has closed down a series of accounts connected with the UAE, Egypt and Saudi Arabia as part of its effort to shed more light on "state-backed information operations". Regarding the United Arab Emirates and Egypt, it said: "We have removed a network of...
  • 13th February 2019
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Last December Egypt's minister of culture, Ines Abdel-Dayem, went into battle against sectarianism – armed with a flute. The minister, who is a former director of the Cairo Symphony Orchestra and a former chair of the Cairo Opera House, played her favourite instrument at a concert in Minya...
  • 4th February 2019
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Proposed constitutional changes in Egypt, announced at the weekend, could keep President Sisi in power until 2034. Sisi is currently in the second of two four-year terms and, if the constitution remains unchanged, he must leave office in 2022. Under the proposals submitted to parliament...
  • 22nd January 2019
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Reverberations from a controversial pop concert are continuing in Egypt, more than a year after the event. It was in September 2017 that a performance by the Lebanese band, Mashrou' Leila, in Cairo triggered a moral panic. The band's lead singer is openly gay and several fans in the audience...
  • 3rd April 2018
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Not content with securing 97% of the votes in Egypt's presidential "election", the Sisi regime is venting its wrath against local and foreign news media that ventured to criticise the process. On Sunday it was reported that the Egyptian newspaper al-Masry al-Youm had been fined LE 150,...
  • 22nd January 2018
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Atheism is like terrorism and is part of an orchestrated plot to destroy Arab countries, an Egyptian government minister claimed last week. "The ideas of atheists, queers and extremists are time bombs" like the bombs of terrorists, Muhammad Mukhtar Juma'a, minister of awqaf (religious endowments...
  • 5th January 2018
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    As Saudi Arabia relaxes its rules against cinemas and women drivers, Egypt now looks set to inherit the coveted title of Arab country with the most absurd restrictions. Having made little progress in combating an Islamist insurgency, the Sisi regime has turned its attention to the "...
  • 30th December 2017
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    A court in Egypt has separated a mother from her two children because she is an atheist. The decision to refuse custody of the children came from a family court in Cairo last Sunday, Radio France Internationale (RFI) reports. RFI gives no further details of the case but notes that it comes...

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