Shahira Amin

31 Articles

Shahira Amin is an award-winning freelance journalist and former Deputy Head of Nile TV. She quit her job at the height of last year's uprising in Tahrir Square in protest at State TV's biased coverage of the revolution. Amin is also a longtime contributor to CNN International.

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Latest by Shahira Amin


Shahira Amin

Train disaster fuels rising anger

News of Monday night’s deadly train accident in Badrashin, 40 km south of Cairo, shocked and dismayed Egyptians . Nineteen young conscripts of the Central Security Forces were killed and scores were injured (many of them critically) when two train carriages derailed and rammed into a parked freight train. The train, carrying more than a …


Shahira Amin

Fighting for inclusion

A few weeks ago I was invited to a UNDP-sponsored forum on “women’s participation in post-revolutionary parliamentary elections.” Policy makers, legislators and opinion leaders from Egypt, Libya and Tunisia had gathered to share their experiences in legislative elections held following the mass uprisings in their countries and discuss ways of ensuring increased participation of women …


Shahira Amin

Silencing the critics

Bassem Youssef, host of the satirical TV show “Al Bernameg” (The Program) faces investigation after a lawyer filed a complaint earlier this week, accusing him of insulting President Mohamed Morsy. The case against Youssef is the latest in a series targeting journalists and bloggers in recent months, threatening to undermine freedom of expression in the …


Shahira Amin

Crisis over constitution shows no sign of easing

Egyptians living abroad headed to polling stations on Wednesday to vote in a popular referendum over the country’s first post revolution constitution. In Egypt meanwhile, controversy over the proposed constitution deepened. Rival mass protests were held nationwide on Tuesday ahead of next Saturday’s vote on the draft document. Tensions have been running high since President …


Shahira Amin

Fasten your seat belts please

The mood was tense last Thursday as anti-Islamist protesters continued their sit-in in Tahrir Square, demanding that President Mohammed Morsy annul the constitutional declaration he had issued a week before. Liberals and leftists had all come together to adopt a common stance: “No to absolute powers for the president.”They vowed to continue their sit-in until …


Shahira Amin

A crisis of trust

It is a must that all political forces come together and immediately start reconciliation dialogue


Shahira Amin

Anger over unmet expectations

It was as if the clock had turned back to those fateful days last November when youth revolutionaries had battled with security forces on Mohamed Mahmoud Street in downtown Cairo, in protests demanding an end to military rule. This week’s clashes between activists and riot police on the very same street were reminiscent of last …


Shahira Amin

The battle against female genital mutilation

The first time female genital mutilation was discussed openly in Egypt was in 1994. This was during the UN-coordinated International Conference on Population and Development in Cairo. The two week conference brought together world leaders, government officials, rights campaigners, and representatives of civil society and the media from 179 countries to discuss developmental challenges, linking …


Shahira Amin

Morsy faces choice, militancy or moderation?

The militant ambush on a police patrol in North Sinai bears the hallmarks of the Al-Qaeda terror group. Not only did the gunmen who carried out the attack raise black flags bearing the Muslim declaration of faith on them “There is no God but Allah and Mohammad is his Prophet,” but they also chanted Allahu …


Shahira Amin

The price of broken promises

This week I am in Houston, Texas. I am here to give a talk to students of journalism, at the opening of the Sam Houston University Global Center for Journalism and Democracy, about the situation in Egypt post- revolution. This isn’t my first visit to Texas. I was here eight years ago as an Egypt …


Shahira Amin

Mobs use violence to keep women away from Tahrir

The mob attack on France 24 Correspondent Sonia Didri near Tahrir Square last Friday as she was reporting on the protests is both shocking and disturbing. It’s disturbing because the mob violence phenomenon appears to have become a trend in the “new” Egypt. The assault on Didri is the latest in a wave of sexual …


Shahira Amin

Jordan’s women celebrate success

Eman Hylooz is a Jordanian Computer Science graduate and a successful young entrepreneur. The company she started in June 2012 is steadily growing and is expected to make a net profit of 114,108 Jordanian Dinars in its first year of operations. Hylooz recalls that the idea for her business start-up first came about when she …


Shahira Amin

Egyptian women struggle for equality and freedom

Nearly twenty months after last year’s mass uprising that toppled President Hosni Mubarak, Egypt’s women are again taking to the streets, demanding “bread, freedom and social justice,” the same demands made by pro-democracy activists protesting in Tahrir Square during the 25 January revolution. A women’s rally outside the Shura (Consultative) Council headquarters on Qasr Al-Eini …


Shahira Amin

Bar for free expression still low in ‘new’ Egypt

In March 2011, blogger Maikel Nabil became the first prisoner of conscience in Egypt, post-revolution. He was arrested and detained on charges of spreading rumours about the armed forces and criticising the military in his blog posts. Nabil was tried in a military court and sentenced to three years in prison, but was released after …


Shahira Amin

The volcano erupts

The outpouring of rage in Islamic countries isn’t just about a low-budget film insulting the prophet Muhammad. It is the eruption of a volcano that has been simmering for the past eleven years


Shahira Amin

The whole truth and nothing but the truth

On 8 March, I was in London attending a panel discussion on the safety of women journalists. I had been invited there by the International News Safety Institute (INSI) after contributing a chapter to a book published earlier this year by the INSI on the safety of female journalists working in conflict and danger zones. …


Shahira Amin

IMF lifeline, a test for Morsy

For many Egyptians, life was tough under the former regime of President Hosni Mubarak. Now it’s even tougher and things are likely to get worse before they get better


Shahira Amin

Keeping the peace

Should Islamist rule in Egypt be cause for growing Israeli concern or is it indeed a new opportunity for peace?


Shahira Amin

Egypt at a crossroads

Seventeen months after the revolution, Egypt is vastly different from the country that existed the day hundreds of thousands of protesters took to the streets to overthrow the former dictatorial regime


Shahira Amin

Ending the Legacy of Hatred

Egyptians reacted with shock and grief to the news of an armed attack on an Egyptian border post in North Sinai earlier this week. The fact that the attack occurred just as the victims—more than 16 Egyptian border guards—were breaking their Ramadan fast made the deadly incident all the more tragic. Speaking to reporters after …


Shahira Amin

Your ID, Your rights

Thousands of marginilised women in Qalyoubia are now the proud owners of national IDs but it will be a while yet, before all four million women in Egypt who are without national IDs – can acquire their cards and their rights


Shahira Amin

Women at the frontiers

For those who launch attacks on journalists to stop the free flow of information, perhaps no message is as fitting as the following words from Chilean poet Pablo Neruda: “You can cut the flower but you cannot stop the coming of spring…”


Shahira Amin

Tolerance and diversity

Only by reversing policies and norms that encourage divisions within the society can Egyptians hope to peacefully co-exist and live in harmony.


Shahira Amin

Egypt’s women after the uprising

The uprisings transformed the image of women from voiceless and submissive to powerful leaders, that is, until the revolution passed


Shahira Amin

Cautious optimism as first Egyptian civil president is sworn in

Morsi may or may not be the president we had wished for when we took to the streets to topple the autocratic regime, but it is only through solidarity and the support of all political movements that the newly elected president can gain the clout he needs to implement the much-needed political, social and economic reforms