Blog archive: Egypt

  • 19th December 2009
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    An Egyptian member of parliament has filed a lawsuit against a female journalist over a newspaper article headed “My four husbands and I”. Writing in the independent daily, al-Masri al-Youm (here, in Arabic), Nadine al-Bedair asked why Muslim men are allowed to have more than one wife...
  • 15th December 2009
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Among the objects on sale at the British Museum shop in London are miniature reproductions of the Rosetta Stone, along with Rosetta Stone bags, Rosetta Stone neckties, Rosetta Stone mugs, Rosetta Stone teatowels, even Rosetta Stone umbrellas. All that could stop if Zahi Hawass,...
  • 9th December 2009
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    The Egyptian authorities seem to be worried about the growing number of women adopting the niqab – the face veil traditionally worn in the Gulf countries. Its use is relatively new in Egypt, and it tends to be favoured by those of a Wahhabi/Salafi religious disposition. Various ...
  • 8th December 2009
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Egypt's opposition parties have become so fixated on campaigning against the succession of President Mubarak's son that they are losing sight of other issues crucial to their political future, Amr Hamzawy of the Carnegie Middle East Centre says in an article for The National: While...
  • 6th December 2009
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    “Things have just gotten a lot more interesting,” the Arabist blogsays, commenting on news that Mohamed ElBaradei, former head of the IAEA and Nobel peace prize winner, is thinking or running for the Egyptian presidency in 2011. The Arabist continues: This may peter out in smoke, but …...
  • 28th November 2009
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Why is it, I wonder, that cartoons are seen as such a threat in Arab countries? Following the recent cases in Tunisia andMorocco, an Egyptian cartoonist and his publisher have been fined for corrupting "public morals". Last year, Magdy el-Shafee produced a book called Metro,...
  • 27th November 2009
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Egypt is holding hundreds of people in indefinite detention because they are suspected of trying to emigrate to Europe illegally, according to a local human rights organisation. The Cairo-based Land Centre for Human Rights appears to have uncovered a previously-unreported category of...
  • 4th November 2009
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Amid all the fuss about the Goldstone Report and accusations of anti-Israel bias at the Human Rights Council, another damning UN report – this time about Egypt – has attracted zero attention from the world's media. The report, issued last month, is by Martin Scheinin,...
  • 2nd November 2009
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    You've probably heard of the butterfly effect – an idea in chaos theory where some small event, such as a butterfly flapping its wings, can trigger hurricanes, tidal waves and other cataclysms. In order to avert such crises in the future, Dr Makhboul Rasmi, a scientist at Azhar...
  • 1st November 2009
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Al-Azhar's bold but brief confrontation with the niqab (face veil) seems to have fizzled out, leaving Mohammed Tantawi, the government-appointed Sheikh of al-Azhar, with egg all over his face. It began early last month when Tantawi asked a female student toheavily criticised at...
  • 26th October 2009
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Last year's "Facebook strike" in Egypt caused a good deal of excitement about the potential of online activism, though the strike itself was generally acknowledged as a failure. In the latest issue of Arab Media and Society, David Faris takes along and detailed look at this attempt to...
  • 25th October 2009
    By
    Brian Whitaker
    Plainclothes thugs attacked Ayman Nour, Egypt’s much-harassed opposition politician, and his contingent at a fish restaurant in Hurghada last night, Bikya Masr reports. Ahmed Abdul Gawad, Nour’s media assistant, was severely beaten and wounded, Nour told Bikya Masr on Saturday...

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