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Egyptian army could hold key to Mubarak’s fate

By Alistair Lyon / Reuters BEIRUT: Egypt’s military has kept out of this week’s clashes between police and protesters demanding the ousting of 82-year-old President Hosni Mubarak, but it could eventually decide his fate, echoing events in Tunisia. A Tunisian army general’s refusal to back Zine El-Abidine Ben Ali’s crackdown on protesters is widely regarded …

DNE

Aflame on the Nile

By David Faris In Naguib Mahfouz’s magnificent Adrift on the Nile, written just before the June War, a group of politically and socially alienated Egyptians gather on a houseboat every night to smoke hash and forget about the troubles of their country. Enveloped in a haze of smoke, they drift through the days and nights, …

DNE

Communication lockdown ahead of Egypt’s Friday protests

  CAIRO: Mobile phone services, internet and practically all modes of communication were blocked to Egyptians on Friday morning as the Egyptian government took unprecedented measures to nip planned protests after Friday prayers in the bud. Starting midnight on Wednesday, short text message services and Blackberry messenger (BBM) were no longer available to subscribers of …

DNE

UN chief appeals for end to Egypt violence

DAVOS: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appealed on Friday for Egypt’s leaders and its people not to let violence escalate further, calling for respect for freedom of association and speech. "All concerned — people or leaders — should ensure that the situation in that region, particularly in Egypt should not lead to further violence," Ban told …

DNE

166 of 1,000 arrested in Cairo released, say lawyers

By Heba Fahmy CAIRO: More than 1,000 have been detained in Cairo since Jan. 25 protests, including 166 released on Thursday afternoon, civil rights lawyers said. Numbers of detainees remain unconfirmed in other governorates with 65 in Alexandria and 25 in Suez confirmed. Prosecution ordered them to remain in custody for 15 days pending investigations, …

DNE

Safwat El-Sherif denies NDP officials fled when protests erupted

By Heba Fahmy CAIRO: Speaker of Egypt’s Shoura Council and leading figure in the ruling National Democratic Party Safwat El-Sherif denied that any NDP officials left the country when the protests erupted on Jan. 25, at a press conference held Thursday at the NDP headquarters in downtown Cairo. “These are all rumors,” he said. “The …

DNE

Violent clashes in Suez, police station set on fire

By Marwa Al-A’asar SUEZ, Egypt: Around 1,000 demonstrators clashed with security forces in Al-Arbeen Square and Al-Geish Street in the northern city of Suez Thursday, protesting the security’s alleged use of live ammunition during earlier protests which killed four people. A police station was set on fire as families of the victims who died in …

DNE

Could Suez be Egypt’s Sidi Bouzid?

By Alexander Dziadosz / Reuters SUEZ: Mosaics lining the road to Suez glorify Egypt’s achievements in a 1973 war with Israel but, further on, toppled billboards, charred signposts and shattered glass stand as monuments to a more recent conflict. The port city has jumped onto the world’s radar as the scene of clashes between government …

DNE

Injured protester advised not to go to governmental hospitals, remains untreated

By Marwa Al-A’asar CAIRO: Hamada Nabil, from Abul Nomros in Giza, said he was beaten with a stick filled with small metal balls while protesters were being dispersed in Tahrir Square at midnight on Tuesday, and added that he cannot find a safe place to receive medical treatment. “We were at the square protesting peacefully …

DNE

Pope Shenouda urges Copts to exercise restraint

By Essam Fadl CAIRO: Pope Shenouda urged Copts in his weekly sermon on Wednesday in Abbaseya Cathedral to exercise restraint until tension resulting from protests has subsided. In his sermon, the Pope referred to the state of anxiety that Egyptians are experiencing because of the protests, emphasizing that wisdom is necessary to overcome these hard …

DNE

Human Rights Watch fears Egypt army may open fire

By Amena Bakr / Reuters DAVOS, Switzerland: Human Rights Watch (HRW) fears that Egypt’s army may open fire on protesters during demonstrations planned for Friday, the head of the New-York based group said on Thursday. Police in Cairo have already fought thousands of Egyptians who defied a government ban on Wednesday to protest against President …

DNE

Officials speak of subsidies amid rising social unrest

By Sarah Daoud CAIRO: Amidst protests and social unrest, Egyptian officials are again talking about subsidies. Officials have told local media that they will absorb the global rise in food prices through subsidies. “I think the government was keen to press ahead with the subsidies reform prior to the protests, gradually phasing out price subsidies …

DNE

Protests continue in downtown Cairo Wednesday night

By Abdel-Rahman Hussein CAIRO: Protests continued in downtown Cairo Wednesday night as security forces escalated the scope of their crackdown on those who took to the streets demanding an end to the regime. Following on from Tuesday’s Tahrir Square protest that was broken up with excessive force after midnight, Wednesday afternoon saw protests continue in …

DNE

Saudi prince says tough to predict Mubarak future

By Dmitry Zhdannikov /Reuters DAVOS, Switzerland: The future of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak hinges on the ability of the country’s leaders to understand the reasons behind unprecedented protests, a Saudi royal family member said on Wednesday. “In Egypt, I really can’t say where this is going to go,” Prince Turki Al-Faisal, a former Saudi intelligence …

DNE

Opposition forces call for thousands to join Friday demos

By Safaa Abdoun CAIRO: Egypt’s opposition forces are galvanizing their calls for change through peaceful demonstrations, hoping to enlist thousands to join protests after Friday prayers today. Political movements and parties joining the protests will include the National Association for Change, the April 6 Youth Movement, the Muslim Brotherhood, Kefaya movement and the Popular Parliament. …

DNE

Rights group asks Prosecutor to ban overseas money transfers temporarily

By Tamim Elyan CAIRO: An Alexandria rights group filed a complaint to the General Prosecutor Abdel Meguid Mahmoud Thursday demanding a halt on money transfers outside the country temporarily until stability is restored. The complaint filed by the Alexandria-based Nassar Human Rights Center addressed money transfers by Egyptians and foreigners, especially those of prominent National …

DNE

EU urges Egyptian authorities to show restraint

BRUSSELS: EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton called on Egyptian authorities to exercise restraint on Thursday and respect the right of the people to protest peacefully against the leadership. "I deplore the reported deaths following the demonstrations taking place in Egypt," she said in a statement. "I call on the Egyptian authorities to fully respect …

DNE

ElBaradei ready to ‘lead the transition’ in Egypt if asked

By AFP VIENNA: Nobel peace laureate and leading dissident Mohamed ElBaradei said Thursday he was ready to “lead the transition” in Egypt if asked, as he left Vienna for Cairo where he was due to join in mass anti-government protests. “If people, in particularly young people, if they want me to lead the transition I …

DNE

ElBaradei to return to Egypt, join protesters

By Agencies CAIRO: Egyptian pro-reform advocate and Nobel peace laureate Mohamed ElBaradei is returning home Thursday to take part in the anti-government protests gripping his country. A spokesman for the pro-reform leader, Abdel-Rahman Samir, said ElBaradei was expected to join protests planned for after Friday prayers across the country. “He is coming back tonight (Thursday) …

DNE

EU tells Egypt to listen to protests

By AP BRUSSELS: The European Union says that Egyptian authorities should listen to their people, deal with their problems and respect their right to demonstrate. The office of EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton on Wednesday called on “Egyptian authorities to respect and to protect the right of Egyptian citizen to manifest their political aspirations.” …

DNE

Clashes between protestors and security in Galaa Street

By Heba Fahmy and Marwa Al-A’asar CAIRO: Clashes broke out between hundreds of protestors and security forces in Galaa Street on Wednesday evening resulting in numerous injuries on both sides. Hundreds from Boulaq joined protestors in Galaa, burning tires and trash in the street and throwing rocks at security forces that responded with teargas. Protestors …

DNE

Variations in local press coverage of ‘Day of Anger’

By Safaa Abdoun CAIRO: As online news portals and social networks are updated by the second with news of the protests around Egypt, local press coverage varied according to affiliation. Rather than reporting on the mass protests that flooded the capital’s main square, Al-Ahram daily’s lead story reported on the current political turmoil in Lebanon …

DNE

Egypt’s ‘Day of Anger’ makes international headlines

By Safaa Abdoun CAIRO: The mass protests that took place in Egypt Tuesday attracted international media with reports and commentaries analyzing the situation. Internationally acclaimed journalist Robert Fisk wrote a commentary tackling the current turmoil in the Middle Eastern countries of Palestine, Lebanon and Egypt, titled “A new truth dawns on the Arab world.” In …

DNE

Tuesday’s protests echo national stance, turning point, says analyst

By Marwa Al-A’asar CAIRO: Tuesday’s protests represent a national stance and a turning point in Egypt’s history since the bread riots of 1977, said Amr El-Chobaki, senior researcher at Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies on Wednesday. “It is the first time that we witness a protest that involves both activists and ordinary people …

DNE

Trade Minister says no risk of destabilization

By Alberto Sisto /Reuters ROME: Egypt is not heading towards destabilization and the government will be able to manage discontent that has led to demonstrations, the country’s trade and industry minister said on Wednesday. “I don’t think, based on the information I have on events of the past few days and hours, that Egypt is …

DNE

Five dead, hundreds injured and arrested on ‘Day of Anger’

By Tamim Elyan CAIRO: Five, including a policeman, died in clashes between protestors and security forces in Suez and Cairo in which rubber bullets and teargas were reportedly used. Soliman Saber (40), Mostafa Ragab (25) and Gharib Al-Sayed (45) were shot dead by security forces, while Gharib Abdel Aziz (40) died early Wednesday at the …

DNE

Opposition calls for second day of protests

By Jailan Zayan /AFP CAIRO: Activists called for a second day of street action on Wednesday as authorities vowed to prevent further protests following huge anti-government rallies in which four people died. The pro-democracy youth group April 6 Movement, the driving force behind Tuesday’s protests — the largest and most significant in Egypt since bread …

DNE

Church sermons urge Copts not to join protests

By Essam Fadl CAIRO: The Coptic Orthodox Church organized special sermons on Tuesday in various churches around the country in a bid to prevent Copts from joining protests on what was dubbed the “Day of Anger” by online activists. Churches asked Coptic Christians not to participate in the demonstrations and to head home right after …

DNE

Thousands protest across Egypt in ‘Day of Anger’

By Tamim Elyan CAIRO: Thousands took to the streets on Tuesday in Cairo and other cities throughout Egypt in Tunisia-inspired protests against worsening economic conditions and police brutality and to call for political reform. Security didn’t engage with protestors early in the day, but used teargas, force and water cannons to disperse them after 3 …

DNE