Friday 23 June 2017
(AL Jazeera 05/02/17)
No responsibility claim for incident in busy Cairo district, the latest in a long line of attacks on security forces. Three Egyptian police officers have been killed in a drive-by-shooting in Cairo by men armed with machine guns, according to the country's interior ministry. Two cars approached a police patrol in the busy neighbourhood of Nasr City late on Monday before opening fire at the officers. Five others were wounded in the incident. The interior ministry did not specify how many assailants were involved and no group has claimed responsibility for the attack. Egypt is currently battling several armed groups mainly concentrated in the Sinai Peninsula following the 2013 military coup that toppled Mohamed Morsi, the country's first democratically elected...
(Xinhuanet 05/02/17)
Chinese companies operating in Egypt held an employment forum on Sunday at the Suez Canal University in Egypt's Ismailia Province, east of the capital Cairo. At least 15 Chinese companies, including Chinese large industrial developer TEDA, fiberglass giant Jushi, Hengshi Egypt Fiberglass Fabric Ltd, XD-EGEMAC High Voltage Co. Ltd and New Hope Group for agricultural industries, joined the recruitment forum, which was held in cooperation with the Chinese embassy in Cairo. Ismailia's Governor Yassin Taher hailed the forum and "the clear criteria set by the Chinese companies for their needs of the Egyptian labor market," noting that most of their needs will be met among the graduates of the Suez Canal University. "We hope for further cooperation with the Chinese...
(Reuters (Eng) 05/02/17)
As the militant group steps up attacks on Coptic Christians, it is also trying to assert hardline religious authority in the remote area near Egypt’s border with Gaza. One Monday in early April, Shaher Saeed was driving south of the city of Arish in Egypt’s North Sinai when he came upon a group of Islamic State militants who had stopped a truck carrying cigarettes. “I saw them forcing the driver from the vehicle and stripping the upper part of his clothing before tying him to the door of one of their cars,” said Saeed, who lives in the area. “They hit him on the back more than 10 times, then burned all the cartons of cigarettes … They let him...
(Xinhuanet 05/02/17)
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi hailed workers in all fields and urges more production in a statement on Sunday during a celebration organized by the Egyptian Trade Union Federation to mark the Labor Day. "It is the day of every honorable Egyptian who works hard and does their best to reconstruct their nation and benefit the people," said the Egyptian president during a speech aired on the state TV. "I remind you that our dear Egypt is expecting a lot from you to establish together the pillars of future for us and for the coming generations," he added. During the celebration, Sisi honored 12 veteran hardworking members of labor unions and ordered to provide 100 million Egyptian pounds (5.5 million...
(Bloomberg 05/02/17)
Saudi Aramco is seeking to boost its fuel-trading volume by more than a third as the world’s biggest crude exporter expands its capacity to refine oil to grab a bigger share of growing markets in Asia and Africa. Aramco, as Saudi Arabian Oil Co. is known, is building refineries in the kingdom and in Asia to help it increase sales and purchases of gasoline, diesel and other products to more than 2 million barrels a day, said Ibrahim Al-Buainain, chief executive officer of Saudi Aramco’s trading unit, Saudi Aramco Products Trading Co. Owning refineries gives the unit, known as Aramco Trading Co., options for buying and selling fuel that some of its competitors don’t have. “The key is that you...
(AFP (eng) 04/29/17)
Thousands of Egyptian Catholics waving the colours of the Vatican flag gathered amid tight security Saturday in a Cairo stadium where Pope Francis was to lead mass. Crowds of pilgrims poured out of buses into the stadium in the early hours of the morning, eager to see the Argentine pontiff in the flesh for the first time. "I'm so happy to be seeing the pope in real life," said Siham Ghali shortly after daybreak. "It's a great honour for me and all Egyptians." Nearby, Jihan John said she was delighted to be attending a mass led by a Catholic pope for the second time after seeing former pope John Paul II when he visited Egypt in 2000. Francis "came to...
(AFP (eng) 04/29/17)
Pope Francis is set to lead a mass for Egypt's small Catholic community on Saturday as he visits the country in support of its Christians following a series of deadly church bombings. The spiritual leader of the world's almost 1.3 billion Catholics will lead mass for some 30,000 believers in a stadium on the outskirts of Cairo. The event will bring together members of all Catholic rites in the country -- Coptic, Armenian, Maronite and Melkite. Egypt's Catholic community is estimated at about 272,000. The Argentine pontiff will give a homily during the mass, which is to be held in Arabic and Latin. After lunching with Egyptian bishops, the pope will meet seminarians before wrapping up his 27-hour visit in...
(AFP (eng) 04/28/17)
Pope Francis denounced "demagogic populism" on Friday and insisted that violence profanes God's name, in a wide-ranging speech as he visited Egypt to push for tolerance. "Peace alone... is holy and no act of violence can be perpetrated in the name of God, for it would profane his name," the Catholic pontiff told a Muslim-Christian conference in Cairo. Francis is in Egypt on a 27-hour visit to push for dialogue with Muslims and support the country's embattled Christian minority that has suffered a series of jihadist attacks. In his speech, Francis said peace was not helped by "demagogic forms of populism... on the rise". It is "essential", he added, to block "the flow of money and weapons destined to those...
(AFP (eng) 04/28/17)
Pope Francis landed in the Egyptian capital on Friday to promote "unity and fraternity" with Muslims and Christians, who have suffered a series of jihadist attacks. The visit is a "voyage of unity and fraternity," the pontiff told reporters before he disembarked in Cairo airport to be greeted by Catholic priests and Egyptian Prime Minister Sharif Ismail. It is "less than two days but very intense," he said. He was then taken by car to meet Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in his Ittahidya presidential palace. Francis will later meet Muslim and Christian leaders before visiting a church that had been bombed in December. Security will be extremely tight with Egypt under a state of emergency following two bombings in...
(AFP (eng) 04/28/17)
Pope Francis flies to Egypt Friday for a visit aimed at fostering reconciliation with the Muslim world against the backdrop of recent jihadist attacks on the Middle East's biggest Christian community. The 80-year-old pontiff is due in Cairo around 1400 (1200 GMT) and his 27 hours on Egyptian soil will include a meeting with the grand imam of the Al-Azhar mosque, sealing a recent improvement in relations between Catholicism and the Sunni branch of Islam. Security will be extremely tight with Egypt under a state of emergency following two bombings in Coptic churches earlier this month that killed 45 people. All of the country's churches have been placed under additional protection because of the risk of another assault timed to...
(The Associated Press 04/28/17)
Germany's Parliament has approved a measure for closer cooperation with Egypt on security issues to fight terrorism, which rights organizations say could make Germany complicit in Egyptian human rights abuses. The agreement, signed with Egypt last summer, allows the countries to exchange experts and information to help fight terrorism and other crimes like drug trafficking and money laundering, and carry out operational measures upon request. Though the agreement is predicated upon "upholding human rights," critics say it lacks any effective guarantees. Human Rights Watch Germany director Wenzel Michalski says Germany "should be getting cast-iron guarantees that Egypt is calling a halt to its abuses, not rushing to put its agents next to Egyptian forces." The parliamentary press office said Friday...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/28/17)
Karam Nassif fled his home in Egypt's North Sinai this year after his name appeared on a Christian hit-list circulated by Islamic State. Fearing for their safety after this month's twin church bombings, his family now wants to leave the country. "You've seen what happened in Tanta and Alexandria and Cairo," his wife Mervat said, referring to church attacks that have killed more than 70 people since December. "I feel that there is no hope for us at all, we have been smashed." Pope Francis flies to Cairo on Friday on a mission to mend ties with Islamic religious leaders angered by his predecessor's criticism of the treatment of Christians in Egypt. But his visit comes as Egypt's Copts, the...
(Voice of America 04/28/17)
A bipartisan panel of experts on Egypt-U.S. relations is urging Congress to rethink its annual $1.5 billion aid package to Cairo as the country fails to improve its human rights record. The experts argued Egypt, under President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, is a military-run state, with no respect for human rights and rampant with government-sponsored anti-Americanism. The scholars made their comments at a recent hearing of the Senate Appropriations Committee. Michele Dunne, director of the Middle East Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, began her remarks by mentioning recently leaked footage that appears to show Egyptian soldiers executing terror suspects in the Sinai Peninsula. Rising repression "Egypt does face a serious threat from terrorism, but the unprecedented human rights abuses...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/28/17)
In green fields near Egypt's Mediterranean coast, PepsiCo is harvesting its first crop of potatoes produced from local seeds to make a leading brand of chips. Like other big manufacturers in Egypt, the global food and beverage giant is sourcing more of its raw materials locally to keep a lid on costs and limit price rises as consumers struggle with food inflation running at above 40 percent. PepsiCo's Chipsy brand accounts for about 55 percent of the local potato chip market and requires 360,000 tonnes of potatoes a year, previously grown exclusively from imported seeds. The cost of imports has soared in Egypt since the country abandoned its currency peg of 8.8 pounds to the U.S. dollar in November, imposed...
(Voice of America 04/28/17)
A low-cost and widely available drug could save the lives of 1 in 3 mothers who would otherwise bleed to death after childbirth, according to a new study. Severe bleeding, known as postpartum hemorrhage, or PPH, is the leading cause of maternal death worldwide, killing more than 100,000 women every year. Even for mothers who survive, it is a painful and traumatic experience. The world's poorest countries, especially in Africa and India, are the worst hit. Drug from 1960s But there is new hope. In the 1960s, Japanese researchers developed a drug called tranexamic acid, which works by stopping blood clots from breaking down. But they could not persuade doctors to try the drug for treating PPH. The London School...
(AFP (eng) 04/27/17)
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said Wednesday he will not interfere in any decision the courts or parliament take on a controversial move to transfer two Red Sea islands to Saudi Arabia. "I fulfilled my part, and it is now in the parliament and with the judiciary. We won't interfere," Sisi said live on television during a conference in the Suez canal city of Ismailiya. The deal to hand over the islands, signed during an April 2016 visit by Saudi King Salman during which Riyadh showered Egypt with aid, provoked accusations in Egypt that Cairo had "sold" the strategic islands.
(BBC News Africa 04/27/17)
Egypt feels badly let down by its ally and partner Britain, according to officials who spoke to the BBC on condition of anonymity. The Egyptian government believes it has complied with every security improvement demanded in the wake of the 2015 bombing of a Russian passenger plane by so-called Islamic State (IS) that killed everyone onboard soon after take-off from Egypt's Sharm el-Sheikh airport in the Sinai Peninsula. Yet 18 months on from the incident, as other European tourists have returned to the Red Sea resort in their thousands, the UK has refused to reverse its suspension of flights to Sharm el-Sheikh, allegedly on direct orders from No 10. Downing Street has declined to comment but the Department for Transport...
(The Associated Press 04/27/17)
Pope Francis is facing a religious and diplomatic balancing act as he heads to Egypt this weekend, hoping to comfort its Christian community after a spate of Islamic attacks while seeking to improve relations with Egypt's Muslim leaders. Security has been tightened, with shops ordered closed and police conducting door-to-door checks in the upscale Cairo neighborhood where Francis will stay Friday night. His only public Mass is being held at a military-run stadium. Vatican spokesman Greg Burke said Francis wasn't overly concerned and wouldn't use an armored car, as his predecessors did on foreign trips. Francis insisted on going ahead with the trip even after twin Palm Sunday church bombings killed at least 45 people and a subsequent attack at...
(Washington Post 04/27/17)
On a table in Paula Youssef’s apartment sits a framed collage of worshipers killed in Egypt’s latest church bombings, all people he knew. They included his best friend, Bishoy. Youssef, too, almost died in the blast nearly three weeks ago during Palm Sunday services that was claimed by Egypt’s Islamic State affiliate. So like many Christians in this sprawling northern city, Youssef thought Pope Francis would cancel a scheduled trip to Egypt. But despite concerns about his safety, the pontiff is set to arrive in Egypt on Friday for a two-day visit that will include meetings with senior political and religious leaders as well as Mass on Saturday. “It’s really touching that Pope Francis has decided to come after all...
(Business Day Ghana 04/27/17)
There are currently 960 million mobile subscriptions across Africa – an 80 percent penetration rate among the continent’s population. Internet penetration is at 18 percent with 216 million internet users, according to the latest Jumia mobile trend report for Africa. The 2017 edition of the African Mobile Trends Paper is the third white paper presentation from Jumia delving into mobile trends across Africa and specifically Nigeria. The study takes a look at the how the market has democratised mobile internet use, the consumer behaviours driving increased smartphone adoption and the role of mobile brands, mobile operators and m-commerce in creating a synergy of an enhanced customer experience. This year’s Mobile Africa Study was carried out in 15 African countries which...

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