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The Guardian

Egypt 'spent £1.7m on teargas' amid economic crisis

Activists condemn government's purchase of 140,000 canisters at a time when foreign reserves are at critical low and IMF loan is delayed

By : Patrick Kingsley in Cairo  

Egypt spent the equivalent of £1.7m on 140,000 US-sourced teargas canisters last month, despite the Egyptian government nearing bankruptcy – and amid a wave of police brutality that 21 human rights groups this week labelled a return to Mubarak-era state repression.

The Guardian home 

Egypt 'spent £1.7m on teargas' amid economic crisis

Activists condemn government's purchase of 140,000 canisters at a time when foreign reserves are at critical low and IMF loan is delayed

Egyptian protesters attack a police vehicle during a demonstration in Cairo

Egyptian protesters attack a police vehicle during a demonstration in Cairo. Activists have labelled the wave of police brutality as a return to Mubarak-era repression. Photograph: Mohamed Abd El Ghany/Reuters

Egypt spent the equivalent of £1.7m on 140,000 US-sourced teargas canisters last month, despite the Egyptian government nearing bankruptcy – and amid a wave of police brutality that 21 human rights groups this week labelled a return to Mubarak-era state repression.

Egypt's interior ministry made the emergency order at the end of January, according to records retrieved by Egyptian broadsheet al-Masry al-Youm. It came at the start of a week of civil unrest sparked by protests against President Mohamed Morsi, his Muslim Brotherhood, and police malpractice.

 

Egypt to seek IMF talks as it reveals grim economy data

 

By Asma Alsharif

CAIRO Feb 21 (Reuters) - Egypt plans to invite an IMF mission to Cairo within a week, the government said on Thursday, signalling an imminent resumption of negotiations over a $4.8 billion loan as it struggles with an acute foreign currency shortage.

Planning Minister Ashraf al-Araby said foreign investment in Egypt had all but dried up and announced grim economic data, exposing the depth of the country's financial crisis before elections expected in the spring.

Analysts had expected the government of President Mohamed Mursi to try to delay a deal with the International Monetary Fund until after the elections, as the loan's terms will demand highly unpopular austerity measures. Parliamentary polls are expected to begin in April or May.

 

Egypt president's son drops government job after furorCool

CAIRO | Sun Feb 17, 2013 2:35pm EST

CAIRO (Reuters) - One of Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi's sons withdrew from taking up a job with a firm affiliated to the civil aviation ministry on Sunday amid media accusations of nepotism.

The decision by Omar Mursi to forgo a human resources post at the Holding Company for Airports and Air Navigation showed the role of independent media in holding leaders to account in the new Egypt, following the uprising that toppled President Hosni Mubarak in 2011.

world 

Hisham Kandil, Egypt's Prime Minister, Says 'Unclean' Breasts Cause Diarrhea (VIDEO)

The Huffington Post | By

Hisham Kandil Unclean Breasts

Addressing the prevalence of diarrhea among young children in Egypt, Prime Minister Hisham Kandil explained what he believes to be the cause of the ongoing epidemic: women's "unclean" breasts.

In the speech, broadcast on Egyptian TV channel Nile Culture, Kandil recalled what he saw during a visit to a rural part of the nation where clean water is scare. According to a Huffington Post translation of the original video clip (below), the prime minister said he has seen children get diarrhea because mothers are too ignorant to know to clean their breasts before breastfeeding their infants.

world 

Hisham Kandil, Egypt's Prime Minister, Says 'Unclean' Breasts Cause Diarrhea (VIDEO)

The Huffington Post | By

Hisham Kandil Unclean Breasts

Addressing the prevalence of diarrhea among young children in Egypt, Prime Minister Hisham Kandil explained what he believes to be the cause of the ongoing epidemic: women's "unclean" breasts.

In the speech, broadcast on Egyptian TV channel Nile Culture, Kandil recalled what he saw during a visit to a rural part of the nation where clean water is scare. According to a Huffington Post translation of the original video clip (below), the prime minister said he has seen children get diarrhea because mothers are too ignorant to know to clean their breasts before breastfeeding their infants.

BBC 

Egypt foreign currency reserves fall again

The bank said reserves fell by $1.4bn during the month from $15bn to $13.6bn amid continued political unrest and violent street protests.

The figures again raise concerns over the state of Egypt's economy and the government's finances.

The economy has stagnated since the revolution to oust former President Hosni Mubarak in 2011.

The central bank gave no reason for the fall in a statement published by the state news agency Mena.

But economists say the continued political instability in Egypt has crippled the tourism sector - an important earner of foreign currency - and discouraged foreign investment.

 

Egypt curfew scaled back as Mursi seeks end to bloodshed

By Edmund Blair and Alexandra Hudson

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi address the media following their talks in Berlin January 30, 2013. German Chancellor Angela Merkel urged Egypt's Islamist president on Wednesday to open a dialogue with all political forces in the crisis-ridden Arab country after a week of violence that has killed more than 50 people. REUTERS-Tobias Schwarz

CAIRO/BERLIN (Reuters) - Authorities in an Egyptian city scaled back a curfew imposed by President Mohamed Mursi, and the Islamist leader cut short a visit to Europe on Wednesday to deal with the deadliest violence in the seven months since he took power.

 

Morsi, in Germany, defends comments on Jews Cool

By GEIR MOULSON  

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and President of Egypt Mohammed Morsi, left, address the media during a joint press conference after a meeting at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2013. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn) 

Associated Press/Michael Sohn - German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and President of Egypt Mohammed Morsi, left, address the media during a joint press conference after a meeting at the chancellery in Berlin,more Germany, Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2013. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn) less

BERLIN (AP) — Egypt's Islamist president turned aside repeated criticism of his past comments referring to Jews as "the descendants of apes and pigs" as he visited Germany on Wednesday, insisting that the remarks were taken out of context and were aimed at criticizing Israeli attacks on Palestinians.

A key focus of Mohammed Morsi's one-day visit to Berlin was to seek support to rebuild a crumbling Egyptian economy. However, questions about his comments — made in 2010 — pursued him throughout the day. The remarks drew attention earlier this month when an Egyptian TV show aired them to highlight and mock Morsi's current policies.

 

Merkel tells Morsi to ensure dialogue in Egypt

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi give a joint press conference following a meeting at the Chancellery in Berlin on January 30, 2013. (AFP/John Macdougall)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi give a joint press conference following a meeting at the Chancellery in Berlin on January 30, 2013. (AFP/John Macdougall)

BERLIN: German Chancellor Angela Merkel urged the visiting Egyptian president Wednesday to ensure constant dialogue as his country grapples with a political crisis that has sparked deadly unrest.

Merkel told a joint press conference in Berlin with President Mohamed Morsi that Germany wanted a successful transformation process in Egypt, where Morsi took over last year, and was ready to help.

BBC 

Egypt opposition to rally on revolution anniversary

bbc 25 1 13

Police used tear gas on protesters overnight

Police have clashed with protesters gathering in Tahrir Square in the Egyptian capital, Cairo, ahead of the second anniversary of the uprising that swept Hosni Mubarak from power.

President Mohammed Morsi's opponents plan a rally, accusing the Islamist leader of betraying the revolution.

Mr Morsi denies the claim, and has called for "peaceful" celebrations.

Egypt's Morsi Tries to Defuse Flap Over Jews Slur

 

Egypt's Islamist president sought Wednesday to defuse Washington's anger over his past remarks urging hatred of Jews and calling Zionists "pigs" and "bloodsuckers," telling visiting U.S. senators that his comments were a denunciation of Israeli policies.

Both sides appear to want to get beyond the flap: Mohammed Morsi needs America's help in repairing a rapidly sliding economy, and Washington can't afford to shun a figure who has emerged as a model of an Islamist leader who maintains his country's ties with Israel.

U.S. Sen. John McCain said a congressional delegation he led that met with Morsi expressed to him their "strong disapproval" about his 2010 comments. The delegation and Morsi had a "constructive discussion" about the remarks, he told reporters.

 

US condemns Mohammed Morsi anti-Semitic remarks

The White House has condemned anti-Semitic remarks by Mohammed Morsi, the Egyptian president, who once described Israelis as the “descendants of apes and pigs”.

US condemns Mohammed Morsi anti-Semitic remarks

Since being elected Mr Morsi has promised to abide by Egypt's decades-old peace treaty with Israel Photo: Egypt State TV/AP

 

Mr Morsi’s slurs, which emerged in recordings from 2010, were termed “deeply offensive” by Jay Carney, Mr Obama’s press secretary, who said concerns had been raised with Egyptian officials.

Mr Carney urged Mr Morsi, who has promised to respect Egypt's decades-old peace treaty with Israel, to promptly state publicly that he respects people of all faiths.

BBC 

British Airways Christian employee Nadia Eweida wins case

Nadia Eweida 

Nadia Eweida was banned from displaying her cross at work 

A British Airways employee suffered discrimination at work over her Christian beliefs, the European Court of Human Rights has ruled.

Judges ruled Nadia Eweida's rights had been violated under Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

nadia ewida in starsbourg 4 sept 12 

Nadia Eweida's with her legal team and supporters following her hearing at Strasbourg 4th Sept 2012

 

 

Egypt fires finance, interior ministers before IMF visit

CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt's Islamist President Mohamed Mursi fired his finance and interior ministers, cabinet sources said on Saturday, in a government reshuffle he had promised to assuage public anger at an economic crisis.

General Mohamed Ibrahim will replace Ahmed Gamal El-Din as interior minister and Al-Mursi Al-Sayed Hegazy takes the finance ministry job from Mumtaz al-Saaed.

Egypt's pound, 10 percent down since the 2011 uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak, lost more than 3 percent against the dollar in the week ending on Thursday, hitting a record low as fears grew over its rapidly shrinking foreign currency reserves.

No 1 News Site on the Threat of Radical Islam 

Egypt Pursues Hezbollah

by: Clare Lopez 

Hezbollah supporters at a rally in Lebanon (Photo: Reuters)

 

Sunnis and Shi’ites are literally at each others’ throats these days in Syria, much as they have been for over 1300 years of Islamic fitna, but elsewhere rapprochement may be the word of the day. The Egyptian ambassador to Lebanon was quoted in a December 29, 2012 Daily Caller interview talking about pursuing a relationship with Hezbolllah, Iran’s Shi’ite terror proxy.

Calling Hezbolllah a “real political and military force” on the ground in Lebanon, Ashraf Hamdy, the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s envoy to Beirut, provided the latest signal that a new Cairo-Tehran axis of jihad may be taking shape.

 

Economic uncertainty drives up Egypt borrowing cost

Worries about the value of the Egyptian pound, which dropped some 4 per cent in the past week, drive yields on Egyptian t-bills upwards

Yields on Egyptian 182-day T-bills rose at an auction on Thursday as a weakening Egyptian pound and uncertainty about the fate of a $4.8 billion IMF loan drove up the cost of government borrowing.

 

The average yield climbed to 14.104 per cent from 13.300 per cent at the last issue on Dec. 25. Last week's auction was cancelled.

"Rates have been on the rise after the political tension since the presidential decree," said Cairo-based fixed-income dealer Ahmed Kheir El Din. "The uncertainty about the IMF loan is also weighing on trader sentiment," he said.

Egypt reserves plunge as economic crisis bites

CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt's central bank said it would start foreign currency auctions on Sunday to conserve reserves that have fallen to a critical level, pointing to a deepening economic crisis as President Mohamed Mursi tries to calm political turmoil.

The announcement was posted on the bank's website on Saturday just two hours after Mursi used a major policy speech to declare the economy was showing signs of improvement.

"This is a massive, massive setback for them," said an economist based outside Egypt. "If the Egyptian pound is no longer freely convertible, then you're bound to undo eight years of successful and effective currency management."

BBC RADIO EGYPT WOULD FACE TUMOIL YEAR 2013

The central bank has spent more than $20 billion in foreign reserves to support the pound since a mass uprising against Hosni Mubarak in early 2011 chased away tourists and foreign investors.

S&P downgrades Egypt credit rating

From: AAP

RATINGS agency Standard and Poor's has downgraded Egypt's long-term credit rating because of "elevated" tensions over its political crisis, and warned it could be lowered further.

The country's long-term rating was lowered to B- from B because the turmoil has "weakened Egypt's institutional framework, and the increasingly polarised political discourse could diminish the effectiveness of policy-making," the agency said on Monday.

"A further downgrade is possible if a significant worsening of the domestic political situation results in a sharp deterioration of economic indicators such as foreign exchange reserves or the government's deficit," it said.

Egypt's Constitution Fails to Protect Human Rights, Minorities, Ros-Lehtinen Says

 

(WASHINGTON) – U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, today released the following statement on Saturday’s final round of voting on Egypt’s draft constitution:

“Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood-led government will be claiming a victory after this Saturday’s referendum on Egypt’s new constitution.  However, the stark reality is that this is a defeat for the Egyptian people.  We must not forget that this new constitution not only fails to protect many Egyptians, but also fails to meet international standards for protecting basic human rights.  In his attempt to solidify power, Morsi excluded the opposition parties and religious and ethnic minority groups from the drafting process.  The Muslim Brotherhood-led government was then able to integrate sharia law into key aspects of the constitution, omitting pivotal protections for ethnic and religious minorities.


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