A great look at the services offered by the Egyptian police and their ingenious efforts in dealing with Cairo's traffic problem in Ramadan
Tuesday, 25 September 2007
Monday, 24 September 2007
More than 20,000 workers from the Ghazl el-Mahlla textile industry are on strike demanding their rights from Mubarak's government. Solidarity is also being expressed from other textile workers around the country.
Sunday, 23 September 2007
This time it's in Fayoum - and the victim is dead. He was an ordinary citizen that rubbed the 'authorities' the wrong way. And that's the scenario in Egypt these days. It's not only the so-called 'terrorists' or Muslim brotherhood that bear the brunt of the police's cruelty, but also the average impoverished Egyptian who happens to fall into the hands of a system that can no longer deal with its citizens without resorting to torture - the system has come to the point where it genuinely knows no other way. It has even trickled down to the streets of Cairo where a lot of people seem to believe that the only way to deal with these 'low-lives' is to torture and humiliate them. Such are some of the great legacies of the National Democratic Party - a party that recently imprisoned four editors for publishing 'naughty' stories about it.
Tuesday, 18 September 2007
Saturday, 15 September 2007
Protest against the Egyptian government's decision to dissolve the Association for Human rights and Legal Aid
Sunday 16th of Sep. at 10 am in front of the associations headquarters - 2 Maaruf St, off of Talaat Harb.
Friday, 14 September 2007
Another ridiculous move by the government - the NDP has filed a lawsuit against these 4 editors because they dared to criticize Mubarak and his clan - which is a completely different case by the way, than the one filed against Ibrahim Eissa for allegedly spreading rumours about the president's health.
A Cairo court sentenced the editors of four outspoken tabloids to a year in prison for defaming President Hosni Mubarak and his ruling party, judicial officials said Thursday. "My first reaction was surprise. The sentence is very harsh," said Adel Hammouda, editor of the weekly al-Fagr about his sentence."The judge praised the president and his son and the ruling party while reading the verdict — it was unprecedented."
Qandil told the Associated Press that he was sued over a column he wrote attacking the president for his criticism of the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah, during its war with Israel during the summer of 2006.
"I will appeal. I won't pay anything because if I did, it means I recognize the court verdict," he said.
The other editors were tried for writing articles criticizing the prime minister, the interior minister and the president's son Gamal, who many believe is set to succeed his father.Ikhs 3ala deh balad.
Thursday, 13 September 2007
Apparently there are 33 series being shown on state and satellite channels this ramadan! Surprisingly enough, the Yacoubian building is among them - but which I am sure will have nothing to do with the real story. And Sha3bula is also starring in one.
Ramadan Kareem :)
Amnesty International today condemned the Egyptian government's decision to dissolve the Association for Human rights and Legal Aid (AHRLA) as a new blow to freedom of association and called on the authorities to end such practices. The organization said such measures do not bode well for the forthcoming amendments to the law on associations.
The attack on AHRLA appears to be linked to its active work in supporting victims of torture and exposing human rights violations in Egypt. The Association has been providing legal advice to victims of such violations, in particular to those who have been tortured while in custody at police stations or other detention centres, including by representing them before Egyptian courts. One of these victims is political detainee Mohamed Abdelkader al-Sayyed, who died in police custody in 2003 in circumstances suggesting that torture or other ill-treatment led or contributed to his death at the hands of an officer of the State Security Investigations (SSI). SSI officers have been allowed to commit serious human rights violations with impunity. Despite a forensic report stating that the injuries to the body of Mohamed Abdelkader al-Sayyed at the time of his death were consistent with injuries that can be sustained by being hit by solid objects and by exposure to high temperature or electric shocks, the SSI officer who was allegedly responsible for his death was acquitted by a Cairo criminal court on 5 September 2007.
And as usual they have been accused of receiving foreign funds without authorization.
Wednesday, 12 September 2007
Germany continues to claim that Nefertiti is not fit to travel, and Hawass is adamant that the bust should be loaned to Cairo, and if not, then returned completely. To be honest, I am fed up with the German Cultural Minister and his stance on this issue. I'm not a fan of Hawass, but I still think that Germany's take on this is ridiculous. The bust was smuggled out of Egypt when it was found in the early 20th century and now I think Egyptians have a right to see it. But claiming that due to conservation issues, the bust cant leave the country, is a load of bull - and it says a lot about what the cultural minister thinks about Egypt and Egyptians.
Saturday, 8 September 2007
It seems that pretty soon it will be officially haram to fabricate rumours against the invincible Mubarak. Clerics, or actually the government-puppet Tantawi, is calling such actions immoral and against Islam. While he is outspoken about this, I've never seen him condemn any of the numerous atrocities that have repeatedly been carried out by the president and his government - and he still wants people to take him seriously.
In another outrageous story, a student's masters dissertation was refused by authorities at Helwan university because it went against mainstream Islam. The student argues that his dissertation was dealing with the interpretation of words in the Quran according to their original meanings at the time of the Prophet. He decided he was not going to use the interpretations formulated by Islamic scholars 300 or so years later, and which have today become unquestionable. Whether or not people agree with his argument is besides the point - a dissertation should be graded according to how accurately the research has been conducted and how he argues his case, not whether the marker agrees with his ideas. But this has become so typical in Egypt, I am not at all surprised.
A meeting will be organized tomorrow, Sunday, the 9th of September at 6:30pm in Cairo’s Press Syndicate located on Abdel Khaleq Tharwat Street, Downtown Cairo. More details on the Torture in Egypt website.
A reluctant prosecution witness in the trial of Egypt's leading opposition politician was found dead, apparently of suicide, in his prison cell Thursday, police said.
During the 2005 trial of opposition presidential candidate Ayman Nour, fellow defendant and prosecution witness Ayman Hassan abruptly announced that he had been forced by security services to implicate his former employer.
The judge at the time ignored his recanting and sentenced both he and Nour to five years in prison.
"He was found hanged by a bed sheet," said a police official on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to make statements.
Yeah right. Who are they fooling.
Thursday, 6 September 2007
Wednesday, 5 September 2007
Tuesday, 4 September 2007
Plus, the whole population is waiting for him to disappear. It seems there are already several groups up on the social networking site, Facebook, contemplating life after Mubarak - will we ever see the day!
Monday, 3 September 2007
Yesterday morning the police officer, Islam Nabih Abdel-Salam, and his accomplice, Reda Ahmed, who were both involved in sodomizing Emad al-Kabeer at Boulq al-Dakrour police station, were put on trial. Of course as with any highly publicized human rights case in Egypt, the lawyers of the defendants argued that all this commotion about the case was merely an act by Human Rights Groups to further promote themselves, and that these groups were receiving foreign funding. Read report from Masry al-Youm.
I'm not exactly sure what that means, and why it is that Human Rights Groups would try to promote themselves, but this is something that we've become accustomed to hearing in Egypt - that it's all part of a big conspiracy against Egypt by foreign forces who are trying to breed hatred among the masses. I wonder if the government is actually going to go ahead with this game and actually sacrifice one of its own precious highly trained torture officers, just to save face against the ever growing dissent in Egypt, or whether the trial, which will resume on Wednesday with the final verdict, is just another farce that will give the officers a detention sentence not worth mentioning.
Sunday, 2 September 2007
Saturday, 1 September 2007
America's new embassy in Iraq is the latest symbol of the occupation of the country and has been described as the "crusader castles that once dominated the Middle East". It is apparently the largest US embassy ever built and is roughly the size of the Vatican, costing 600 million dollars! It is a potent reminder that the Americans are here to stay and that they have already started reconstructing a Middle East that caters to their needs. It's not really so far off from the American fort situated in downtown Cairo - perhaps a little bigger.
At a time when millions of Baghdadis outside the green zone receive only a couple of hours of water and electricity daily, Iraqis observe that this project has been completed on time, on budget, and is entirely self-sufficient with its own fresh water supply, electricity plant, sewage treatment facility, maintenance shops and warehouses.
Embassies were traditionally designed to promote interaction with their host communities, she says, but not this one. “Although US diplomats will technically be ‘in Iraq’ they may as well be in Washington.
Our very own Zahi Hawass has made yet another great discovery - this time inside Tut's tomb. Wow, what would we have done without him. Truly remarkable. Not only that, but replicas of his Indiana Jones-style hat are on sale at the Franklin Institute in Philly for only $45! What a deal! If anyone reading this is in Philly, please pick one up for me - I really need one of those hats :)