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Articles on this Page
- 03/30/17--16:41: _Dead Man summit in ...
- 04/04/17--15:22: _Tiran and Sanafir i...
- 04/03/17--11:33: _Seen in Alexandria ...
- 04/06/17--04:16: _Egyptian X-Files : ...
- 04/09/17--16:55: _The Black Palm Sunday
- 04/10/17--15:57: _The Martyrs of Poli...
- 04/13/17--17:04: _Egypt returns back ...
- 04/14/17--15:43: _What happened to Ap...
- 04/15/17--16:39: _A history of State ...
- 04/16/17--17:18: _And Aya Hijazi is f...
- 04/17/17--05:58: _Happy Sham El-Nassi...
- 04/19/17--17:07: _Cairo and Riyadh : ...
- 04/23/17--15:38: _Aya Hijazi is back ...
- 04/25/17--14:33: _The flowers arc at ...
- 04/25/17--14:33: _The flowers arc at ...
- 04/25/17--14:33: _The pyramids of flo...
- 04/25/17--14:33: _The pyramids of flo...
- 04/25/17--14:33: _Taking photo at the...
- 04/28/17--04:12: _Sisi ratifies Judic...
- 04/29/17--15:30: _The VOIP and the In...
- 05/04/17--15:26: _Seen in Alexandria ...
- 05/09/17--17:05: _Seen in Alexandria ...
- 05/15/17--16:30: _What happened to th...
- 05/17/17--08:00: _Seen in Alexandria ...
- 05/18/17--14:50: _Where is El-Adly !!...
- 05/19/17--14:43: _Seen in Cairo : A T...
- 05/21/17--16:39: _Kodak Agfa presents...
- 05/23/17--04:41: _Seen in Cairo : Onc...
- 05/25/17--05:09: _21 Websites blocked...
- 05/25/17--17:50: _Khaled Ali heads to...
- 03/30/17--16:41: Dead Man summit in the Dead sea
- 04/04/17--15:22: Tiran and Sanafir isles : Back to the courts fight "Updated"
- 04/03/17--11:33: Seen in Alexandria : The Naval unknown solider memorial
- 04/06/17--04:16: Egyptian X-Files : Who sent that SMS ?
- 04/09/17--16:55: The Black Palm Sunday
- 04/10/17--15:57: The Martyrs of Policewomen force in Egypt : Remember their names
- 04/13/17--17:04: Egypt returns back to the state of emergency
- According to the amendments approved by the parliament on Tuesday, detentions can occur without warrants and outside of cases in flagrante delicto.
- The amendments allow indefinite temporary detentions.
- The law allows the trial of civilians in front of "special courts" aka "Emergency High state security court" upon the orders of the President who has the right to appoint army officers in the judges' panel of those courts.
- The law gives the president the power to refer defendants in any criminal cases to those courts.
- The Emergency high state security court's verdicts can not be appealed. Only the president has the right to pardon or overturn or reduce the sentences of those courts.
- The law allows the authorities to withdraw weapons' licenses.
- The law allows the State to impose curfews, to evacuate and to cordon areas according to the written or oral orders of the president.
- The law allows the President to oversee all means of telecommunication and media as well confiscating newspapers and magazines.
- The law allows the government to oversee social media networks and shutting down accounts.
- 04/14/17--15:43: What happened to Apple's FaceTime in Egypt ??
- 04/15/17--16:39: A history of State of Emergency in Egypt
- 04/16/17--17:18: And Aya Hijazi is free again in time of Spring
- 04/17/17--05:58: Happy Sham El-Nassim and Happy Easter
- 04/19/17--17:07: Cairo and Riyadh : What is really behind Asiri's statements !!
- 04/23/17--15:38: Aya Hijazi is back to the U.S and Trump got his moment
- 04/25/17--14:33: The flowers arc at Egypt's Flowers show 2017 [Flickr]
- 04/25/17--14:33: The flowers arc at Egypt's Flowers show 2017 [Flickr]
- 04/25/17--14:33: The pyramids of flowers at Egypt's flowers show 2017 [Flickr]
- 04/25/17--14:33: The pyramids of flowers at Egypt's flowers show 2017 [Flickr]
- 04/25/17--14:33: Taking photo at the flowers arc [Flickr]
- 04/29/17--15:30: The VOIP and the Internet Revolution in Egypt : Not So good
- 05/04/17--15:26: Seen in Alexandria : The Bibliotheca's Planetarium on the go
- 05/09/17--17:05: Seen in Alexandria : The Spahi Palace on the go
- 05/15/17--16:30: What happened to the The Polish girl ?
- 05/17/17--08:00: Seen in Alexandria : Inside Sidi Gaber railway station
- 05/18/17--14:50: Where is El-Adly !!!???
- 05/19/17--14:43: Seen in Cairo : A Talaat Harb building
- 05/21/17--16:39: Kodak Agfa presents : Egypt's Spring Flowers Fair 2017
- 05/23/17--04:41: Seen in Cairo : Once a Credit Foncier Egyptien
- 05/25/17--05:09: 21 Websites blocked in Egypt and it is not good at all
It was really a Dead man's summit in the Dead Sea
Or like how Iyad El-Baghdadi described the summit
Dead men speaking in a dead summit of dead organization in the lowest place on this planetThe Arab summit at the Dead Sea. How appropriate. It's also the lowest spot on earth.— İyad el-Baghdadi (@iyad_elbaghdadi) March 29, 2017
Now here is a summary of the summit:
The Prince of Kuwait slammed the Arab spring claiming that its revolutions brought terrorism and misery to the region
The old prince slept afterward during the speeches of other leaders.
|The prince of Kuwait after attacking the Arab spring|
Yemeni president Abdrabbuh Mansour El-Hady slept as if his country was suffering its worst crisis since the infamous Yemen wars in the 1960s.
|Yemeni President had a nap in the summit|
|Abu Mazan and his nap time|
|President Ismail Omar of Djibouti in the summit|
The prince of Qatar Tamim spoke indirectly about the Muslim brotherhood.
The Lebanese president and ex-war criminal Michel Aoun spoke about how bad wars are.
The 80-years old fell on his face while he was on his way to stand for that photo.
Guy to Aoun: "and this is where you face plant yourself"— kristyan benedict (@KreaseChan) March 29, 2017
Aoun: "Here? Cool"pic.twitter.com/2eFWHiZwKJ
El-Sisi was not standing in the middle of the photo as the Egyptian presidents used to do.
He stood at the far left besides Omar El-Bashir.
The Gulf leaders stood in the Middle beside King Abdullah II of Jordan.
|The Arab leaders attending the summit "Reuters"|
According to Journalists who attended the meeting, Sisi and the delegation had to leave to attend the meeting with King Salman and he did not intend to leave while Prince Tamim of Qatar was speaking.
Ironically, Pro-Sisi supporters are claiming that he intended to leave.
Egypt is bigger than this and its president should realize that.
We were taught since our childhood that Egypt is the leader of the Arab countries. Those actions say otherwise.
Interestingly El-Sisi held a small meeting with King Salman in what could be a reconciliation between them exchanging invitations to visit each other country.
Now, I am extremely worried about the fate of the two Egyptian islands Tiran and Sanafir.
Needless to say, I think millions of Arabs are missing Qaddafi's wild shows live in the Arab summits.
No Arab leader has dared to visit the Zatari camp like UN secretary general Antonio Guterres before or after the summit.
No Arab leader has spoken about what happened to Rima Khalaf and how she resigned from her position as the Executive secretary of the United Nationals Economic and Social Commission for Western"ESCWA".
Khalaf resigned after Guterres asked her to withdraw an "ESCWA" report classifying Israel as an apartheid state.
No Arab leader dared to speak about the famine in Yemen or Somalia
I think they are afraid of doing so.
They agreed that they support the Arab peace initiative and the two states solution when it comes to Palestine.
They want a Palestinian state on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital.
They are against terrorism and support political solution in Syria as well...Libya
Needless to say, I doubt if the world followed that summit for real.
Let's be realistic, the Brexit is much more important and more interesting than a bunch of old Arab leaders, mostly dictators gathered to discuss the same old topics.
The urgent court's verdict does not say whether the isles are Egyptian or Saudi but it says that the Supreme Administrative court has no jurisdiction over the whole matter.
|President Sisi and King Salman at the Dead sea last week|
In case you forget from a year ago , in April 2016 the Egyptian and Saudi governments announced a new maritime demarcation deal, by which places the strategic Tiran and Sanafir Red Sea island under Saudi sovereignty.
In last December and against the court orders and public rejections, the Egyptian government sent the agreement to the Parliament to approve it.
In January, the Supreme administrative court issued its historical verdict annulling the agreement.
Despite the court orders, the government or rather the regime is insisting on going forward with the deal and decided to challenge the verdict in front of the court of urgent matter as well the Supreme Constitutional court directly and indirectly.
What do I mean about "indirectly"?
Well, I mean lawsuits filed by concerned citizens against the Supreme Administrative Court's verdict with no direct relation to the government just like our case here.
Suddenly, we found "concerned citizen" and lawyer Ashraf Farahat filling a lawsuit in front of Cairo Urgent Matters court claiming that the Supreme Administrative court has no jurisdiction over the Islands case.
Already it is a known game for the government since the time of Mubarak and his National Democratic Party "NDP", if the administrative court annuls the results of parliamentary elections, a concerned citizen goes to the court of urgent matters to stop this verdict.
Do not ask about the legality or constitutionality of this because the law and the constitution are the last things to be respected in this matter.
Now, there is huge ...let's be polite and say misunderstanding here because all lawyers as well the judges and legal experts say that anyone read a book of law and courts in Egypt knows very well that the court of Urgent court has no jurisdiction whether legally or constitutionally over the Supreme Administrative court especially it is a supreme court.
The lawyers and judges who spoke only say that the Urgent matters court's verdict should be totally ignored because it is void.
This what I have heard from lawyers involved in the original Tiran and Sanafir case.
Here is Khaled Ali from the original team of lawyers that sued the Egyptian state over the islands speaking about Sunday's verdict.
A summary of what he said in the long post
The Urgent matters court's verdict does not represent any danger constitutionally or legally on Tiran and Sanafir islands because they are beyond its jurisdiction legally even if will issue 100 verdicts. Yet the danger for real is sending the agreement to the of Representatives where it will be approved. This will help Saudi Arabia in winning the international arbitration as it has the approval of the executive and legislative authorities; the thing that will make its position internationally. Do not pay attention to urgent matter court's verdict as all the attempts to pass the agreement in the House of Representatives as well the attempts of the regime to ignore the supreme administrative court.This is what I fear of. After this urgent matters court's verdict, the House of Representatives will pass the demarcation agreement very soon claiming that they are not breaking the law or the Constitution.
On Monday, Khaled Ali and his team declared that he filed a lawsuit at the Administrative Court to stop the verdict of the Urgent Matters Court. On Tuesday, he announced the Administrative court set 18 April to look in to his appeal against the urgent Matter courts.
Now this is fast as it usually takes more time to set the date but let's say for real that the Administrative court is really angry.
Not only this court ruling comes days after the meeting between Sisi and Salman in Jordan but it also comes amidst a big fight between the state and judiciary over the Judicial authorities draft law as well a fight within judicial authorities themselves over jurisdiction.
The House of Representatives already approved the controversial draft law last week and since then the Judges club as well State council club are extremely angry and their boards are meeting in order to see how they escalate the matter.
Unlike 2005, the Judges club seems unwilling to clash with the regime at the current moment and proposed a meeting between its head and President El-Sisi after his return from the States.
Back to Cairo and the isles.
When the court of urgent matters was founded in the time of Mubarak, it was made reportedly to overcome the slowness of judiciary and courts in urgent matters like for instance stopping an eviction order for instance but not to speak about a national sovereignty matter.
Anyhow it seems that the regime is really in a hurry to seal the deal with Saudi Arabia after that meeting between Sisi and Salman in the Dead Sea Summit last week.
The meeting comes after some gestures of good willing showed from both sides, like for instance the Saudi Aramco's decision to restore oil exports to Egypt in March.
Ironically, the fact that such court's verdict came right after the meeting enforced that impression in the gulf that the Egyptian judiciary is not independent and that all what El-Sisi's regime really or unfortunately the Egyptians are money.
Just look at the Dubai-based CNN Arabic tweet about the news:
"After days following the meeting between Sisi and King Salman, a court ruling returns Tiran and Sanafir to Saudi Arabia !!"بعد أيام على لقاء #السيسيو #الملك_سلمان.. حكم يعيد #تيران_صنافيرإلى #السعوديةhttps://t.co/lT40tVBKYZpic.twitter.com/1drbWA0Rlk— CNN بالعربية (@cnnarabic) April 2, 2017
Egypt is not small and Egyptians are not cheap. I have been scrolling down the "#Tiran_and_Sanafir_are_Saudi" which has been worldwide trending and I felt so angry on how Egypt and Egyptians are being insulted in that hashtag.
There is a Question in mind now: Does this deal worth bringing down judiciary like that ??
The Saga goes on. Next episode at the Supreme Constitutional court if the parliament does not pass over the isles to the Kingdom by next week !!!
Seen in Alexandria : The Naval unknown Solider Memorial.
Originally built as memorial to Khedive Ismail by the Italian community in Alex , the memorial's status changed to become for Egypt 's fallen Naval soldiers after the 1952 coup/revolution exactly in 1964.
There used to be a statue for the Khedive in the middle. It was removed and transferred to Alexandria's faculty of art.
The Memorial is under the supervision and care of Egypt's Navy forces.
Alexandria hosts Egypt's main naval bases for its navy fleet.
From Instagram's Egyptian Chronicles
I also want to finish that report about the new media empires in Egypt and at the same time upload tons and tons of pictures and videos to share with you.
Yet suddenly something happens in Egypt to change all your plans.
At 9.41 PM Cairo local time, Subscribers of Al-Watan Daily Newspaper' Breaking News SMS service received a message claiming that Pro-Ahmed Shafik army commanders started a military coup.
Yes, the subscribers of the Pro-regime Daily Newspaper got that SMS puzzling them. The country was quiet and everything was normal on Wednesday. Yes, the President is abroad but things are calm.
Honestly, I was worried that something would happen at night.
President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi is currently visiting Washington and he met with Trump on Monday.
Soon, Al-Watan newspaper said that its Breaking News SMS service was hacked and hacker sent that SMS.
The newspaper's publisher Mohamed Al-Amin is said to be currently in the United States as part of the media delegation covering El-Sisi's visit to D.C. I can imagine him after knowing what happened back in Cairo.
The newspaper's editors appeared on TV channels claiming that that was an attempt by those "evil people" to distract the people from Sisi's successful visit.
On Wednesday, the former Presidential candidate spoke from Dubai on air on Dream TV 2 stating he knew nothing about that "Al-Watan SMS" describing it as a "childish act" that should be investigated.
Interestingly, Shafik said that he did not "make up" his mind about the upcoming presidential elections in 2018.
Shafik is still considered a rival to Abdel Fattah El-Sisi.
Already on Thursday, we found Pro-regime Youm 7 newspaper managing editor and conspiracy for hinting that "he may run in the upcoming 2018 presidential elections". El-Hawary said in his interesting Op-ed that Shafik belonged to a corrupted regime aka Mubarak regime that faced a huge revolution !!! Yes, El-Hawary who says 25 January revolution is a conspiracy; describes it as a huge revolution.
|Ahmed Shafik in UAE|
Interestingly, the infamous managing editor separates between the Egyptian armed forces and that regime and do not even ask.
Anyhow, I wonder who was behind that strange SMS !??? Already that hacker had million other fake news that could turn Egypt upside down and yet he or she chose that coup SMS.
Why did they choose Shafik? Does Shafik still have supporters in the army in the first place?
There are many questions in my mind.
Speaking about Shafik, there is one million dollars question that is needed to be asked
When will Ahmed Shafik return from his self-exile in UAE?
The man has not got any legal problem to stop him from coming to Egypt and yet he is still staying in UAE.
Also, why is the media ignoring that strange SMS?
This Sunday was officially the start of "Pains week" in Coptic Orthodox Churches in Egypt in a sad irony.
|From Tanta's Cathedral|
At 9.05 AM Tanta local time, the first explosion took place at St.George Cathedral in Tanta city.
According to early reports, the explosion took place at the first and front rows full of men during the Palm Sunday service.
Already the Palm Sunday service started at 6 AM and should have ended at 12 PM.
It never ended because of the explosion that killed over 29 people and injured not less 70 others.
The victims include a judge, some members of the Church Choir, grandfathers and fathers.
The photos resurfaced online showed horrifying scenes. Reports also came speaking about a severe head that most probably belongs to the Suicide bomber.
The St. George Cathedral is considered the biggest church in the Nile Delta governorate.
|The victims of Tanta bombing from|
News reports claim that that object was actually a bomb that had been defused.
Tensions erupted later between the families of the victims and the security forces.
The head of Tanta security directorate was beaten badly the angry people inside the Church.
After that, he was sacked from his post.
It only took three or four hours I believe when a second explosion took place and that time it was in Alexandria.
The bombing that time turned to be at St.Marks Cathedral in Alexandria, one of the most important churches for Egyptian Coptic Christians.
Already this church is considered the mother church of the Coptic Church.
Unlike Tanta's Cathedral, the explosion took place outside St. Marks Cathedral as the suicide bomber was stopped at the metal detector. The man blew up himself killing at least 11 people including the police force assigned to protect the Cathedral
Luckily , the man was stopped because Pope Tawadros II was inside the Cathedral leading the Palm Sunday service along a number of prominent Coptic Church men.
The Coptic church says that Pope Tawadros II left moments before the attack but the Egyptian ministry of interior says that he was inside it when the attack happened.
I just can't imagine what happened if that suicide bomber went inside the Cathedral during the service and blew up himself.
Among the victims that have been killed in the attack three Egyptian policewomen. This is the first time Egyptian policewomen are killed on duty and in a terrorist attack.
Those ladies were standing the police force at the cathedral to inspect women church goers.
The strength of the explosion in the streets affected the old buildings in the heart of Alexandria.
Daesh and its statements as well warningsDaesh claimed responsibility for the attacks in a very short time compared to similar large attacks in other cities.
First , it issued a very small statement on its news agency Amaq which quoted a "security source " in their so-called Islamic City claiming responsibility for the attacks in Alexandria and Gharbia through their social media channels Cairo afternoon.
Then they released one of their blue-red statements with more details about the attacks.
|a couple of sneakers found at the explosion site in the Tanta Cathderal|
The terrorist group that "Abu Baraa Al-Masry" was the suicide bomber in Alexandria bombing while "Abu Isahak Al-Masry" was the suicide bomber in Tanta.
The group renewed its bloody vow that it would continue attacking the Egyptian Christians in the country in the end of the statement.
Interestingly the group did not mention that "Abu Baraa Al-Masry" technically failed in his mission thankfully because he blew himself outside the Church itself.
Daesh already claimed its responsibility for El-Botroseya Church's bombing in December.
It also released in February a-20-minutes video statement vowing more attacks against Egyptian Christians as well calling its supporters in Egypt to launch attacks against.
That video came at the same time, hundreds of Egyptian Christian families were forced to leave their homes in North Sinai after a terrorist killing spree targeting.
Aside from the silly reasons mentioned in the infamous Daesh video attacking Christians allegedly because of their support to the regime and so-called dominance on the Egyptian economy, I believe the terrorist organization has got other reasons behind the Palm Sunday attacks.
I think whenever Daesh loses areas in Syria and Iraq , it diverts attention with operations in Egypt.
It is worth to mention that their affiliated group in North lost important areas they used to control to the Egyptian army.
It is not a propaganda but the Egyptian armed forces indeed won control and purged Al-Halal mount in Middle Sinai from militants last month.
Also, it is a must to hint out that in March , one of the original founders of Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis Salem Salmy was killed in an airstrike by the Egyptian armed forces. Salmy was from the original militants in Sinai that started their operations against the Egyptian regime in 2005 with the "Tawheed and Jihad" group before changing the name and affiliation several times till becoming Daesh-affiliated in November 2014.
Last week. Daesh announced the death of Salmy in one of its English publications saying that he died from his wounds following the airstrikes.
This is not the first time Daesh-affiliated group attacks targets outside North Sinai. I am fed up with self-claimed terrorism experts and geopolitics analysts claiming in mainstream and social media that those attacks mean the infamous militant group transferred its activity from North Sinai to the Valley of the Nile.
Since 2014 , Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis aka Daesh affiliated group has been active in the valley in a very scary way.
People forgot that that group stood behind the Cairo and Mansoura security directorates as well the attempt to assassinate former minister of interior Ahmed Ibrahim !!
They got a very scary of operations in the valley but people forget.
Still, I must say that since December 2016 and the bombing of Botroseya church their targets shifted to include citizens aka the Egyptian Christians.
The fact we are speaking about a coordinated attack that happened on special day in two different governorates show that we are in front of high level of planning and cells that have not been discovered.
I do not know if Pope Tawadros II was the real target in the second attack or it came by luck.
The president reactsFollowing the attacks, President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi held a meeting for the National Defense council.During the meeting , he issued his orders to army to deploy its units to protect vital facilities and buildings in Egypt.
After many hours of meeting, He addressed the public on TV declaring the emergency status in the country for three months.
He has to get the approval of the House of Representatives according to the Constitution within a week following his declaration. It is not a big problem, he will get by tomorrow.
I got many questions to ask but I am so tired, angry, frustrated and I have to get some good sleep.
May God bless the martyrs of today.
Those three ladies are the first Egyptian policewomen to die on duty as well in a terrorist attack.
Here is a quick post with the names and pictures of those ladies.
Police Colonel Nagwa El-HagarThe first woman to die in that horrifying suicide attack was Colonel Nagwa Abdel Allim El-Hagar.
|Late Colonel Nagwa with her son|
Abdel was married to a police general and had two young. The eldest son is a police officer as well.
Sadly , it turned out that her second son died in less than a year. He joined the police academy like his father, mother and brother.
Her younger son passed away while training in a sports club in Alexandria.
He did not die in a terrorist attack as some Pro-Police/army/Sisi/regime Facebook pages claimed.
|Police corporal Asmaa Ibrahim|
Asmaa Hussein was a wife and a mother of two girls "Sandy" and Rodina". Unfortunately, Asmaa left Rodina as a baby.
Police corporal Amina Roshdy
|Police corporal Amina Roshdy|
Those ladies were part of the police force assigned to protect the St.Marks Cathedral during Palm Sunday.
They were assigned to inspect women going to the Church.
All those ladies are Muslim and wearing headscarves as you can tell.
I believe that late Police Colonel Nagwa El-Haggar and Police Corporal Asama Hussein were the two ladies who appeared in the Cathedral taking behind the suicide bomber.
According to news reports, the body of Asama Hussein was badly damaged as she was close to the suicide bomber with few steps away.
Here is the CCTV showing the two policewomen speaking before the suicide bomber blew up himself up.حصرياً .. لحظة تفجير الإنتحارى لنفسه أمام #الكنيسة_المرقسية#ONLIVE#كنيسة_مارجرجس#طنطاpic.twitter.com/wQX8isHr76— ONlive (@ONliveEgypt) April 9, 2017
I mostly criticize the Egyptian police and their actions on this blog but I can't ignore the sacrifices of those ladies.
Hours following the meeting, El-Sisi addressed the Egyptian people in a recorded speech telling to "bear the pain" criticizing at the same time the terrorist attack's coverage in mainstream media.
He also announced that he gave his orders to the Egyptian armed forces to help the police in protect vital infrastructures and facilities.
Then President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi announced the emergency law in Egypt after following the legal conditions
Once again, we are back to the emergency law.
Technically, we lived under emergency law in Egypt in most of our lives in the 20th Century.
We have been living under the state of emergency for the past 83 years. From the 1910s till 2010s, we got only 17 years in total we have lived without the state of emergency.
It is like a curse left by the British occupation just like the infamous bureaucracy that we can not get rid of it.
On Monday, PM Ismail Sherif announced that State of emergency would be in effect starting at 1 PM Cairo local nationwide.
At the same time, he announced that he sent to the House of Representatives asking its members to approve the State of emergency.
|President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi on Sunday at the National|
defense council meeting "Egyptian Presidency"
Just as all the country expected on Monday that the parliament would approve the state of emergency, its speaker and MPs surprised us by sending the Tiran and Sanafir agreement to the legislative committee and approving the amendments to the protest law.
Yup, against all odds the Parliament speaker sent the Tiran and Sanafir agreement to the legislative at 2.05 PM Cairo despite the High Administrative court order.
Needless to say, protesting the Egyptian Saudi demarcation deal will be like a mission impossible during the state of emergency publicly.
It also approved the new amendments to the controversial protest law.
On Tuesday, the majority of the parliament as expected approved in an initial vote the emergency law as well its amendments without any serious discussion.
It is enough to know that the parliament speaker Ali Abdel Aal said that the time of "normal laws" was over and it was the time of "exceptional laws".
The professor of Constitution who also participated in writing the current constitution also added that the "interests of the nation" came "first" before any "constitution" or "law".
This sounds more than alarming.
The parliament sent the emergency law and its amendments to the State council to revise it. Then, it will return back to the parliament for a final vote.
Nevertheless, since 1 PM Monday afternoon, it has been in effect across the country.
The state council's role here is advisory.
What can happen in the state of emergency?Theoretically speaking, the conditions and terms of applying state of emergency in the 2014-Constitution are improved comparing to previous constitutions.
For instance, the state of emergency in 2012-constitution would be applied for six months while in 2014-constitution we are speaking about three months only.
But and here is a big but, we are speaking about the state of emergency at the end of the day. It can affect the country badly in three months just either ways and there are many examples
Moving to the law itself, here are few examples. :
Ironically and sadly, the government does not need that law or its amendments as it already allows itself to detain people indefinitely in temporary pre-trial detention and it confiscates newspapers with the law.
Also, many people including myself wondered Why El-Sisi and the government did not apply the new Counterterrorism law when it got very similar articles especially the president's powers and the answer is in those words "Emergency high state security court".
Yes, the only difference between the two laws that the old emergency law got special courts whereas the new counterterrorism depends on the current courts in the country.
I am extremely worried about that state of emergency.
Terrorists do not care if the country applies state of emergency or not. They do not recognize our laws already.
Since the beginning of the week, Apple's iPhone users in Egypt reported that they can not FaceTime in the country anymore.
I tried twice with a friend of mine two days in a row and found the following:
|Apple's FaceTime and its big moment in the Middle East|
last year in Turkey
Once he or she answers the call, you can not see or hear her or him.
You can see yourself only if you are having a video chat.
This is what we have concluded from our experience.
We tried this on TEData Wi-Fi and Orange mobile networks.
I do not know about Etisalat and Vodafone thought.
If you are iPhone user in Egypt , please try it and share your experience in the comments section.
We are still with the state of emergency in Egypt. I forgot to mention in the first post about that Emergency law a very important piece of information.
the IS-affiliated Anser Beit Al-Maqdis on the Egyptian army checkpoints killing at least 33 army personnel.
Needless to say, the current sad situation in North Sinai and the daily terrorist attacks there prove that the State of emergency is a failure.
It is a daily living example.
The terrorists do not give a damn about the state of emergency or any of our laws. The brainwashed suicide bombers won't be stopped by the state of emergency.
Already, the state of emergency during the time of Mubarak did not stop the terrorists in the 1980s or 1990s for God's sake.
Also, many legal and constitutional experts voiced concerns that the Constitution is being violated by continuous never ending State of emergency.
According to them, Constitution article no.154 which says that the parliament should approve the declaration of state of emergency for three months and that it can be extended for another three months only. I lost counting how many times El-Sisi declared the state of emergency in North Since October 2014.
This is not the only constitution violation when we speak about the state of emergency.
It turned out that President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi declared the state of emergency on last Sunday "9 April 2017" and that declaration was published in the official Egyptian state's Gazette on Monday "10 April 2017" without the approval of the House of Representatives. The parliament should have approved the declaration of the state of emergency first before publishing it in the official gazette.
The House of Representatives approved it on Tuesday "10 April 2017".
I think the new amendments in the 1958-emergency law concerning the detention with an arrest warrant also violated the constitution.
Now Here is a timeline of Emergency law in Egypt since the British occupation.
Cairo's criminal court acquitted Aya Hijazi, her husband and the rest of the defendants in the "Beladi foundation" trial earlier Sunday after three years in detention on charges of several charges including human trafficking and sexual exploitation of street children.
This is one of the best news I have heard recently.
|Aya Hijazi smiling to her husband Hassanein inside the court's cage|
The George Mason University graduate and her team were arrested in May 2014.
For the Past 33 month "Over 1000 day", Aya and her team were detained in custody whether pending investigation or pending trial illegally.
According to the Egyptian law, the maximum period of pretrial detention is 24 months.
|Aya Hijazi and the victory sign at court "Elsam Gomaa"|
I expected that she would get a presidential pardon eventually but after a long time in jail just like Mohamed Sultan, Peter Greste and Mohamed Fahmy.
Many are speaking about the effect of Sisi's visit to Washington D.C from two weeks ago and how the American administration.
Some are saying that it is not the American administration but rather the U.S Congressmen and Senators especially the Democrats who adopted Aya's case.
It is worth to mention that president Abdel Fattah El-Sisi made it clear in his interview with Fox News Channel that he does not interfere in the judiciary.
He also added that he was willing to pardon her if she was found guilty.
Anyhow back to the happy sweet couple Aya and Mohamed.
Mohamed Hassanein told journalists that he would continue helping the street children in Egypt.
Aya also confirmed their plan.
Video: Mohamed Hassanein, Aya's husband, says he will return to the streets to work with children again pic.twitter.com/SAOew3NlON— Sharif Kouddous (@sharifkouddous) April 16, 2017
I do not know if they are really going to stay in Egypt or they will head to the United States.
They suffered a lot and it is enough how they have been defamed by cheap pro-regime media.
Unfortunately, they cannot be compensated for the time they spent in custody.
|The couple in court's cage "Sharif Kouddous"|
The couple and the other 6 people will be released later this week.
Second, Happy Sham El-Nassim to all Egyptian around the globe.
Happy Spring Feast
Here is an old Kawkab issue's cover showing young Soad Hosni celebrating the spring feast in 1960.
|Soad Hosni on the cover of El-Kawkab|
"Misr El-Mahrousa zaman FB page"
On Sunday , a video clip went viral in Saudi Arabia and Egypt. It started in the Kingdom before reaching Egypt's social media realm causing anger and astonishment.
In an interview with Saudi-owned Al-Arabiya News General manager and prominent journalist Turki Aldakhil on Sunday, the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen official spokesperson Major General Ahmed Asiri spoke mainly about the coalition and its start in 2015 and its progress.
In a 45-second video clip, Asiri speaks about President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi and howhe offered to send between 30,000-40,000 soldiers as ground forces in Yemen.
Here is what was said translated into English:
Turki Adakhil : Egypt offered the coalition ....So according to Major General Ahmed Asiri, Egypt's president Abdel Fattah El-Sisi offered to send between 30,000 and 40,000 Egyptian soldiers in March 2015 to join Saudi Arabia and its coalition to liberate Yemen from Iranian-backed Houthi rebels through ground operation but the Kingdom or the coalition rejected the offer kindly because Yemen needed its children then ..etc.
Ahmed Asiri : Yes, it is well known that his excellency President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi offered the Saudi government and the coalition that the Egyptian government government would send ground troops on ground but the "methodology" then "and I mentioned that several times before" did not demand having non-Yemeni forces in Yemen.; Why ?
Because Yemenis should first defend their land and their freedom
Turki Adakhil : and the Egyptian forces ?
Ahmed Asiri :Now the Egyptian forces are participating with Navy and air forces but at that time we were speaking about number 30,000 to 40,000 soldiers
Turki Adakhil : ground forces ?
Ahmed Asiri : Yes , ground forces in addition to Saudi forces on the borders as well the other forces that would join for a ground operation.
Throughout September 2015, we had too many rumors about the participation of Egyptian ground troops which were denied by the Coalition spokesperson aka Ahmed Asiri himself.
|Major General Asiri "Reuters|
And Yes, Egypt's official participation in the coalition involved naval and air forces units only.
On Monday, there was complete official silence on the Egyptian front.
Still, unofficially Al-Shorouk Daily Newspaper quoted anonymous Egyptian informed source who denied completely what the Saudi military official said. The source was amazed on why Asiri would make such mistake and say that in a TV show.
On Tuesday, Major General Asiri retracted what he said.
He claimed that he was not referring to Egypt's Participation in the ongoing Yemen war but rather to Sisi's failed Joint Arab force project that was suggested at the Arab summit in Sharm El-Sheikh in March 2015.
He said in statements to Al-Arabiya that Egypt offered 40,000 ground forces to join that joint Arab forces that never saw the light.
That's why I translated the whole clip. Asiri was specific in what he said about Egypt in the Yemen war.
Saudi officials like Asiri and media figures like Aldakhil do not speak of their minds easily or make mistakes like this easily.
I totally do not understand why he would say that and then he retracted.
This is more than interesting because it seems to the whole world that aside from Tiran and Sanafir saga and Muslim Brotherhood reconciliation with the state, the level of Egypt's military participation in the ongoing war in Yemen is among the main points of disagreement between the Egyptian and Saudi regime.
It is not a big secret but all media reports speak on how Saudi Arabia and UAE were unsatisfied with the level of Egypt's participation in the coalition and wanted Egyptian boots on the Yemeni ground but Sisi and his administration refuse it.
Sisi knows very well how the Egyptian public looks to Yemen war in the 1960s as our own Vietnam war.
By the way speaking about Tiran and Sanafir isles, Egypt' administrative court set the date of 6 June to rule on legal jurisdiction dispute about Tiran and Sanafir isles.
The lawsuit was filed by activist and lawyer Khaled Ali following the Urgent matters court's verdict against the Supreme administrative court's verdict that annulled the Egyptian Saudi maritime demarcation agreement.
According to Khaled Ali, the administrative court decided to set the date for its verdict from the first session in the lawsuit.
Needless to say that the regime is insisting that it is Saudi in the media.
Also on Tuesday, Iraq's leader of Shiite National alliance bloc in Iraqi parliament MP Ammar El-Hakim started an official visit to Cairo where he met President El-Sisi and FM Sameh Shoukry.
I do not know what is really going between Cairo and Riyadh but it seems that it is too complicated.
Egyptian-American Hijazi arrived the United States on Friday along with her husband Mohamed Hassanein on a special plane accompanied by a top adviser to Donald Trump personally.
Their plan to stay in Egypt and to restart their project to help Cairo's street children seemed to be doomed.
Even after their full acquittal from all the shameful charges like child exploitation and human trafficking last week, it will not be an easy to start again an independent NGO like "Beladi" now with the new NGOs law and its strict regulations.
It is not like 2011 or even 2013 in Cairo.
Hijazi and Hassanein returned to D.C along with Dina Powell, Donald Trump's deputy national security advisor for strategy
The Egyptian-American whose star is shining recently among Trump's White House staff came to Egypt and met with El-Sisi last week according to the Washington Post's report about Aya's return to the U.S.
No journalist or reporter as far as I know in Egypt spoke or even knew that Dina Powell was in town except Washington Post. She was not alone in Cairo as U.S secretary of defense Jim Mattis was in town as well.
Aya arrived in Washington and hours later, she and her brother Bassil were received warmly in the White House.
Interestingly, the US president refused to answer any questions or let the media ask any question. It was clever to end at that point because the no.1 question would be: You lifted the human rights condition when it comes to the relations with Egypt but here you are sitting with one of those human rights cases !?MOMENTS AGO: @POTUS meets with Aya Hijazi, woman freed after 3 years of detention in Egypt. https://t.co/mTwAdlx3QVpic.twitter.com/zb239zCxAo— Fox News (@FoxNews) April 21, 2017
The 30-years old Egyptian-American sat on the same chair like Abdel Fattah El-Sisi from two weeks ago.
|Aya Hijazi shaking hands with Trump|
on the same chair like El-Sisi "Reuters"
I feel sad that I did not have got the opportunity to rant about Sisi's big visit to Washington D.C.
|Abdel Fattah El-Sisi and Trump from two weeks ago|
The Egyptian-American girl also took a picture with Ivanka Trump.
Aya Hijazi is a true Egyptian girl with her formal black and white cute look.Welcome home, Aya! pic.twitter.com/IGvVYNOvbQ— Ivanka Trump (@IvankaTrump) April 21, 2017
Needless to say, knowing the role Dina Powell played, it was expected to see Ivanka in the picture and not Steven Bannon.
According to the Washington Post as well the official statements coming from D.C say that Aya Hijazi and her Beladi team were freed after "Trump's intervention" explicitly.Here is the US departement of state's Arabic account quoting WH press secretary Sean Spicer speaking about "Intervention".
A senior Trump administration official told the WaPo that agreement for Hijazi’s release was the product of Trump’s “discreet diplomacy and no favors were presented to Cairo in return.سبايسر: وقد تدخل الرئيس #ترامبلإطلاق سراح #آية_حجازيوعبر للحكومة المصرية عن أهمية الأمر كما قد ناقشه بشكل خاص مع الرئيس المصري. #مصر— الخارجية الأمريكية (@USAbilAraby) April 22, 2017
In another indirect way, there was intervention in Egyptian Judiciary's work.
It is worth to mention that last week, Cairo's First-degree criminal court acquitted Aya and her team of all charges.
El-Sisi has repeatedly that the Egyptian judiciary was independent and when he was asked about her in his Fox News interview, he said that he would use his legal power aka pardon after the verdict.
For the record, Trump is saying that there has been no deal in Aya's case but all the news coming from the States speak about "intervention".
The Egyptian foreign ministry has not issued any Comment about this matter yet.
The Reality TV superstar president has not wasted any time in seizing the moment and using Aya's case to raise his popularity.
|Hijazi and Trump at the White House "Reuters"|
He forgot that the US NGOs workers and Mohamed Soltan return back home as well during the time of Obama.
There is always a price in such deals.
Trump also is sending another indirect message that he is not against Muslim Americans after all Aya is a Muslim.
Trump threw the current Egyptian administration under the bus for a publicity stunt.
All the foreign media is speaking about is that brutal crackdown against the NGOs and we are back to that "coup that removed democratically elected president".
Ironically, the man shared a patriot nationalist song on his personal account the WaPo article that slams the Egyptian regime.
Shamefully, they are attacking Aya Hijazi and claiming that she is an American spy on the social media as well on TV channels boldly !!
I read a crazy tweet of Pro-regime supporter saying that she must be a high ranking officer in the CIA to received in the White House like that !!
Because if she were not a spy but why the President of the States sent her a military aircraft and received her at the While House !!??
Anyhow wild theory went viral that she was exchanged with Egyptian Spy Mostafa Awad who was arrested spying on US for the sake of Egyptian intelligence !!
There has been no swap of spies because there is not Egyptian spy detained in the United States in the first place and Mostafa Awad is not Egyptian but rather a Saudi-born !!!
|Sisi and Trump earlier this month at the White House "AFP"|
I totally understand their frustration and anger.
This is the second time Trump shocks them. The first time was his also stunt raid in Syria.
Anyhow those people forget the fact that officially she was not accused of espionage but rather a set of charges related to exploitation of street children.
Another fact, Aya did not raise up the US passport except in a very time when she found herself detained without any trial year after year.
The US government did what it should do from helping a citizen in a trouble abroad.
Just like how the Italian government is doing with Regeni's file.
This is what governments do but unfortunately, we do not have this concept in our part of the world.
Only VIPs and officials as well security officers got this special treatment.
That's why we find people accusing Aya of being a spy or a CIA agent just like late Giulio Regeni.
Also, people forget how ousted President Mohamed Morsi himself intervened to release Egyptian journalist Shaimaa Adel from detention in Sudan in 2012.
Those facts should not be forgotten.
Kodak Agfa posted a photo:
People taking photos at one of the partitions under some type of metal arc covered by flowers at Egypt's annual Spring Flowers show
Kodak Agfa posted a photo:
People taking photos at one of the partitions under some type of metal arc covered by flowers at Egypt's annual Spring Flowers show
Kodak Agfa posted a photo:
Pyramids made of flowers at an entrance of one of the partitions in Egypt's annual Spring Flowers show
Kodak Agfa posted a photo:
Pyramids made of flowers at an entrance of one of the partitions in Egypt's annual Spring Flowers show
Kodak Agfa posted a photo:
A young man taking a photo of his friend under an arc covered by flowers at Egypt's annual Spring Flowers show
Egyptian president Abdel Fattah El-Sisi has just ratified the controversial judicial authorities law officially issuing it late Thursday.
The law has been issued in a supplement of the Egyptian State's official journal late Thursday. It is currently in effect.
|Sisi and the judges at the Supreme court in April 2016|
This law gives the Egyptian president "head of executive power" the right to choose the heads of judicial authorities and main courts in the country out of three deputies proposed within each judicial authority.
The old judicial authority law stipulates that the heads of judicial bodies are selected based on seniority by their judicial councils and that the president simply ratifies the council's selection.
The Egyptian House of Representative passed the law already only on Wednesday in a 15-minutes-session without any deliberation or discussion at all.
It was approved by two-third of the parliament.
Only 35 MPs including some of pro-regime MPs as well MPs appointed by Sisi himself objected and did not vote. Some are totally against the law and others were against on the voting process itself.
The parliament passed the law which will technically what so ever left from Judiciary independence in Egypt despite the complete rejection of judicial authorities.
Already, the Egyptian State council rejected for legal and constitutional reasons the law twice when it was a draft and demanded the parliament to amend in accordance with the law and the constitution.
We are speaking about 10 constitutional articles violated in that law according to the State council.
The judges say that the new law ends the judiciary's independence and the separation of powers. Check my old post about this law please to know what the judges are referring to.
Indeed, it ends both the independence of the judiciary and the separation of powers as it gives the president the right to choose the heads of the judicial authorities.
I am wondering what the judges will do next and what really the opposition powers and parties in this country can do now.
After the decision of the parliament to pass the infamous law, the Judges club's board held an urgent meeting calling all the judges' clubs' boards in the country to join it to discuss their next move.
After hours, the board of judges' club canceled that their joint meeting other boards and had a separated meeting.
The Club demanded the president not to ratify the law. The board of the club is going to appeal in front of the courts against the law to annul it.
The Judges' club also announced that it would hold a general assembly meeting next 5 May.
The State council club board also held an urgent meeting on Wednesday. The board demanded the president not to ratify it.
|The law in the officialjournal|
The State council club has been more vocal against the law than the Judges' club in this crisis.
The judges of the State council have to be vocal because this law is made specifically for them.
Nearly all the country knows this law is made after the Tiran and Sanafir's historical verdict and administrative court judge who issued it.
Judge Yahia El-Dakroury who ruled in June 2016 that the two isles were Egyptian annulling the Egyptian-Saudi deal to redraw the maritime borders was going to be the head of the State council according to the old law.
Now, everybody knows that the judge who is known for his court rulings against government won't get it.
The judges won't be able to organize any true meeting or mobilization as the Pope of the Vatican is coming to Egypt on Friday.
Technically, Cairo is nearly locked down for that important visit in the upcoming two days.
It is the perfect timing to pass whatever controversial unconstitutional laws without noise. People will get busy in the coverage of Pope's visit.
It is frustrating. It is like Mubarak's judicial authorities law in 2005 but even worse.
At least in Mubarak, the judges and civil society protested.Yes, the Constitutional court can annul this law for violating the constitution but it will be late.
It turned out that the boards of judicial authorities should present their nominees to head their authorities within days, otherwise the President will appoint the heads by himself !!
Damage is done.
Now the Egyptian has a full legal control on both judiciary and media.
I know the Pope's visit is important and historical. Still , this is more important and dangerous actually.
All the media around the globe is speaking about that important visit in critical time.
Thus I will speak today about something that happened in the past 48 hours in Cairo and I think it will be forgotten or be ignored amidst the coverage of the Pope's visit to Egypt.
Do you remember when I spoke about how FaceTime video and voice chat were not working properly from two weeks ago ??
Do you know that I have received comments on the blog as well replies on twitter confirming that there was a problem not only in FaceTime but also in other chat and msg apps !??
People began to speak last week about how Facebook messenger's audio and video services were not working. Same thing was reported with WhatsApp and Viber.
It was a nightmare for Egyptians working abroad and could not check or speak with their families back home. Yes, most of them are back to work fine again now but still, it was a nightmare.
All fingers were pointed to the mobile phone operators and internet service providers but those companies denied their involvement.
We know that those companies hate VOIP because it makes them lose money.
The companies pointed to the National Telecom Regulation authority "NTRA" but the NTRA also denied blocking the VOIP services on its official twitter account on 21 April.
لا صحة لما يتداوله البعض حول إيقاف خدمة VOIP# عن بعض التطبيقات التي تعمل بهذه التقنيه— جهاز تنظيم الاتصالات (@NTRAEgyofficial) April 21, 2017
وقد أكد الجهاز في أكثر من مناسبة عدم صحة هذه الاخبار.
It is not true what has spread by some that VOIP service was suspended in some apps. The authority stated that this news was untrue.On April 24, NTRA spoke about the VOIP problem admitting that the VOIP was suspended actually while speaking about the upcoming e-crime draft bill.
كما أكد أن مشروع #قانون_مكافحة_الجريمة_الإلكترونيةليس له علاقة مطلقا بقطع المحادثات الصوتية للإنترنت— جهاز تنظيم الاتصالات (@NTRAEgyofficial) April 23, 2017
The Undersecretary of the telecommunication committee in the House of Representatives : The draft cybercrime bill is from the most important bills that the committee will look in to carefully in upcoming stage. He also confirmed that the cybercrime bill has nothing to do with suspending the VOIP.Tahrir newspaper quoted an unnamed source in NRTA saying that those services were suspended because of national security concerns.
|Ahmed Abdel Naby|
Early Friday morning, Egypt's Homeland security arrested Ahmed Abdel Naby, the co-founder of The Internet Revolution Egypt Facebook page which has been calling for better and faster as well cheaper internet speed in the country since 2015.
It turned out that Abdel Naby published leaks from alleged documents that show the government was involved in blocking and attempting to monitor the VOIP services in Egypt illegally since at least 2012.
On 25 April, Ahmed and Internet Revolution Egypt published the first part of the alleged leaks which can not be authenticated technically speaking.
The first leak is allegedly a proposal presented by Etisalat Egypt to allegedly Egyptian government explaining how bad the VOIP on its profits. The Emirati owned mobile phone operator allegedly suggested that the government should use "Deep packet inspection" or "DPI" system to control and block VOIP as it wants.
It had no date but it could have represented in 2012 to the government according to the info mentioned inside the presentation.
On the 27 April, the Page who got one million followers released another leak.
The second leak showed summarized minutes of a meeting allegedly held on 28 October 2013 for the members of "technical committee" to put together an organizing framework for VOIP apps through mobile phone operators.
The alleged technical committee was made of 5 NRTA officials, One representative from Egypt's armed forces and another representative from General Intelligence whose names were completely blurred by Internet Egypt Revolution.
It is worth to mention that the army and national security council got representatives in NRTA's board so actually it is not a big surprise.
Interestingly, the first name of those NRTA officials who allegedly attended the meeting is Mostafa Abdel Wahid, the current acting "executive president". Abdel Wahid was appointed to his position in July 2015.
Anyhow, this meeting allegedly spoke about how mobile phone operators have got DPI system so they would use it with some apps easily. It also spoke about VPN and Proxi "yes, instead of proxy" and how it was an obstacle for the companies.
The meeting discussed the experience of UAE where users inform the companies that they use VPN. Then we got an attempt to put a framework with the chat as well audio features of "Whatsup" aka "WhatsApp".
Allegedly, the meeting agreed that some security agency in Egypt would ask Saudi Arabia to give them "the Source code" of WhatsApp if I understand correctly.
I have never read before that the Kingdom has got the WhatsApp's source code but the popular msg app has been blocking encrypted call to the KSA since July 2016.
That alleged meeting agreed on having a bigger meeting with the "general committee" 2 days later to discuss what they would do.
On April 27 also, the popular FB page published another leak.
Undated leak, that presentation was allegedly prepared by NRTA and again it was about how control to deal with VOIP.
Listing other countries' experiences with VOIP especially KSA and UAE, allegedly NRTA recommended enforcing apps developers to decrypt their apps in order to operate in Egypt and the mobile phone operators to use DPI.
Internet Revolution FB page promised to release the next leak about surveillance in Egypt but unfortunately, its admin was arrested.
Realistically speaking all those leaks alone do not say if the government stood behind what happened in the past weeks especially we are speaking about unauthenticated documents speaking from 2012 and 2013.
Not to mention, those leaks are speaking about NRTA's plans and we do not know if those plans have been implemented eventually or not.
We have not seen the leak speaking about surveillance.
Still, the arrest of Abdel Naby shows that there is something wrong.
We do not know what this young man is facing currently.
Officially, NRTA is still denying its responsibility for what has been happening in the past few weeks.
Yet, the long record of state online surveillance and phishing as well blocking apps in the country tells us otherwise.
In the end , it turned out the Internet revolution in Egypt is just like January revolution; both are misfortune.
Seen in Alexandria on the go: Bibliotheca Alexandria's Planetarium in one fine May 2016 Afternoon.
The Planetarium is one of the main attractions in the New Bibliotheca Alexandria.
Sadly, I had not been able to visit it nor visit Bibliotheca Alexandria in my last visit to Alexandria last year.
Now as I am speaking about Bibliotheca Alexandria briefly, I must pay my respect to the man who revived it who passed away in silence last February.
|Mostafa Abady "Moheet"|
Sadly enough, that man died in silence and no one in the media cared to tell the Egyptian people about his role.
You must know that during Mubarak's rule, the media ignored him as usually making the revival of the Bibliotheca as another achievement of Hosni Mubarak and his wife.
I have read that he was not invited to its inauguration in 2002 despite the Bibliotheca Alexandria was his brain child since 1972 !!
I have read also that he was critical of the military rule in Egypt since 1952.
What is sadder was how the mainstream media dealt with his death.
Mostafa Abady is the man who brought the famous Bibliotheca for real to life.
Remember that man and his name.
Remember the thinkers and builders and not the pharaohs.
Please read this great obituary in the Economist about him.
May God bless his soul.
Photo Via Instagram: http://ift.tt/2pLUEgn
Thank God, she is doing fine in her recovery now and I can take some time to update the blog.
Tonight I share two very poor quality photos of the famous Spahi Palace of Alexandria I took while I was on the go in that Spring Break of last year.
|The Spahi palace|
I have been away from my blog but I kept an eye on what is happening in the news especially in Egypt.
God knows how much I wanted to write about certain issues past two weeks especially the incident of the Polish girl.
On 30 April, a young Polish tourist died in Egypt's resort city of Marsa Alam in Red Sea governorate.
According to local authorities, 27-years-old Polish Magdalena Zuk committed suicide wPort Ghalib hospital.
|Magdalena Zuk's last Facebook account profile|
The Egyptian authorities added that Zuk was suffering from deep depression and that she was going to be deported back to Poland two days after arrival but was not allowed to board the airplane due to her "erratic behavior".
She was admitted to the hospital in the resort city where she tried to commit suicide at least once but was saved by the staff.
I am sure that that news passed as familiar news in Egypt as every now and then you find a news report about a tourist who decides to take her or her own life in our country.
Then after a week or more, we found out that Magdalena's death is creating controversy back in her home in Poland as her family feels that there was something fishy about her death.
Magdalena's family is saying that the young tourist who arrived Marsa Alam on the 25th April did not suffer from any depression or mental problems. It did not stop at there.
Her family and her boyfriend fear that she was raped and killed by locals in the resort where she was staying
Originally, Magdalena should have come the Southern Egyptian resort with her boyfriend but it turned out that his passport was expired and so the Polish girl went to that vacation alone.
The question marks raised when her boyfriend published a video of a FaceTime call between him and her where she seemed troubled telling him that she would not return back home. "I do not understand Polish to know what the boyfriend says"
In that video call that was spread in polish media, you can hear an Egyptian man's voice
That man is the local Tour guide Mahmoud Khairy and he is currently the main suspect in the Polish media advocating that Magdalena was raped and murdered.
He is currently accused unofficially in Polish media and social media of several charges that can destroy his career for real even without conviction above them human trafficking.
He closed all his social media accounts already.
In his sole interview with the Egyptian media, Mahmoud Khairy told DotMedia360 that he was innocent of all those charges and the autopsy would prove his innocence; vowing to sue those spreading lies.
Originally from Sharkia governorate, Khairy works or used to work I think with Poland-based-Rainbow tours travel agency.
The Polish travel agency is not having the best times either with a swarm of angry comments on its Facebook page.
Another video or rather a collection of videos showing Zuk in Port Ghalib hospital including one video that went viral in both Egypt and Poland.
That video showed Zuk restrained by a group of men in the hospital.
Many people say that she was handled in a brutal way.
While others saw that she was being stopped from killing herself.
First, the Polish media got the Port Ghalib hospital CCTV's videos from the hospital itself through Dr. Ahmed Shawky who works in it,
Shawky wanted to prove that he and the hospital were not part of anything sinister and they did not cover anything thus he helped the Polish media.
According to him, Magdalena Zuk needed a psychiatrist but there was none in the Southern Egyptian city.
His hospital also is not equipped to deal with similar cases.
Defending the action of his staff, Shawky said that they had to restrain her like to stop her from killing herself.
He also added that Mahmoud Khairy admitted her to the hospital after she was not allowed on the board of a flight back to Warsaw.
The doctor who lives quietly with his small family in Marsa Alam also told Cairo-based DotMedia360 that Khairy said that a friend of her was coming to get her back from Poland.
The hospital is currently open to the media to prove that they are not hide anything.
There is another video that emerged in Poland. Allegedly a video clip shot by another guest in the Hotel she was staying in Marsa Alam.
I do not know if that woman is Magdalena or not but the Polish media says it was her.
An important piece of info was said in that report that Zuk told her friend "her boyfriend" that someone put some "strange substance" in her drink.
As you may have known from the video clip above, the Polish prosecutor general opened an investigation into the young lady's death.
Back in Cairo, there was that expected radio silence and delay in reaction as usual and as expected.
On 10 May we found out that the Egyptian forensic authority conducted an autopsy on Magdalena Zuk in the attendance of a Polish forensic expert hired by the family according to Al-Watan Newspaper.
The autopsy was conducted as part of the cooperation between Egyptian and Polish investigators and prosecution.
On Thursday, BBC said that Polish officials believed that Zuk could have been a victim of human trafficking and organized crime.
There have been no further details at least in English about this is an alarming claim.
Last Friday Polish FM Witold Waszczykowski called his Egyptian counterpart Sameh Shoukry on 12 May expressing his appreciation for the cooperation of Egyptian authority.
The Egyptian-Polish relations are more than good currently.
It is unclear if the death of Magdalena Zuk will overshadow those relations like in the case of Giulio Regeni.
Earlier Monday, the Polish embassy received the young lady's body. The final autopsy report is expected to be issued within days.
I expect that she may have another autopsy in her country if her family is not convinced with the results of the Egyptian autopsy.
Right Wing's Conspiracy theories that became factsI checked Magdalena's Facebook account and I can not find anything alarming.
Only photos of a beautiful young lady enjoying life and learning how to pole dancing.
Facebook is not a measure or can indicate that a person is suffering from deep depression or any mental problem speaking seriously.
|Magdalena Zuk :(|
Maybe she was suffering a trauma and no one was able to help her in Marsa Alam for real.
Maybe if there was a psychiatrist in Marsa Alam, he or she could provide help to her.
Also, I believe the hospital staff should have acted in a better and wiser way.
"We did not do a sexual assault exam because nobody asked for it, " Said Dr. Shawky to the media in Egypt.
Sometimes I feel that they should have done it but at the same time may be the staff was concerned that she is a foreigner and it would a sensitive issue.
Also, I do not understand how they put her on the second floor when she tried to kill herself !!
I am waiting for the final autopsy report.
Interestingly,, the news about Magdalena's death came from Poland in English to Egypt through "Storm Front" news forum at first.
As soon as I opened its link, I found the "White Pride worldwide" logo and I knew where we were going.
The forum adopted the conspiracy theory speaking about the girl's rape and murder as a fact attacking Egyptians and Arabs as well warning white girls not to go to this part of the world alone.
On the front page of that forum, you will find that crystal clear announcement that the forum that it is a community for "racial realists and idealists" and that "they are white nationalists".
The forum also got a live radio show which is followed by Dr. David Duke, the former grand wizard of KKK in the United States !!
Videos and comments on Live leaks and YouTube show that the Right Wing in Europe and the United States is having a new crusade defending the Caucasian race more than Justice.
Alt-right across Europe are sharing those theories on Facebook madly and sadly. It is like a sad gift sent to them.
Friends living in Poland already told me that the right wing conspiracy theories are taking the country by storm especially nationalism is back there
The truth is lost when it comes to the death of this girl if you think about.
The right wing fanatics online already reached to a conclusion based on their beliefs that Magdalena was killed and raped even without a true investigation.
They believe that the Egyptian government is covering the matter because of tourism.
Unfortunately the Egyptian government's record of transparency is not helping !!
I hope the truth prevails either way for the sake of that poor girl may God bless her soul.
It started on 6 May when suddenly we found Pro-regime TV host Lamis El-Hadidy asking that question and wondering why the police had not arrested the former interior yet.
She also wondered if he ran away.
|Former minister Habib El-Adly during the killing of the|
protesters trial in 2011 "Reuters"
Already in November 2016 , he was placed under house arrest in the same trial by the orders of the Cairo criminal court in his villa in 6th of October city.
I think that Villa is at the Police compound in the Upscale Sheikh Zaid district if I am not mistaken.
It was the first time in the mainstream media someone brought up this subject which most people actually forget.
The following days you would hear the people asking openly on social media "where is El-Adly !?" whereas there was a complete silence from the ministry of interior.
Soon on 10 May, we found security sources telling Al-Masry Al-Youm Daily that the security forces went to the notorious minister's house to arrest him according to the court ruling and they could not find him !!!
On the same day ,Youm 7 quoted unnamed sources allegedly close to El-Adly himself saying that he did not run away.
The sources added that he was still at his house holding on to his right to appeal against the court's verdict without handing himself over to the authorities.
On Monday, the interior ministry officially reported to the prosecution that Habib El-Adly escaped.
This was the first official announcement that El-Adly is a fugitive.
On Tuesday, Habib El-Adly lost the appeal against the 7-year prison sentence.
He must surrender to be sent to jail accordingly.
|The policeman to the alien: Have you seen Habib El-Adly|
On Tuesday also, MP Mostafa Bakry demanded the Parliament to discuss the escape of El-Adly requesting at the same time the attendance of the current minister of interior.
Bakry told the reporters at the House of the Representatives that the "facts" pointed that "someone" helped the former minister to escape. He added that El-Adly was allowed to go "free" by the "ministry of interior" despite court sentence !!
Bakry's affiliations are clear to everyone on that Planet.
In those two weeks, #El-Adly hashtag in Arabic has been active in Egypt. Most tweets are angry ones mocking the security forces for not arresting him accusing them of being loyal to him.
Interestingly in all that Egyptian remake of "The fugitive" nobody thought of picking up the telephone and asking El-Adly's wife, the famous journalist Elham Sharshar about her husband's whereabouts.
The editor-in-chief of El-Zaman newspaper surely knows where her husband or did she disappear as well !??
Her column in El-Zaman newspaper has not been updated since 30 April despite the website it is updated on a daily basis.
Of course, I wonder where she pays the salaries of those reporters and writers working with her.
Still, her Facebook page carrying her name is active, in fact very active and very religiously devoted !!
She speaks about the importance of dawn prayer to Muslims.
Updated on Thursday @11:49 PMMrs. Elham Sharshar was summoned to the prosecution earlier Thursday where she was interrogated for nearly 10 hours. Sharshar said that she did not know where her husband whereabouts adding that she was abroad when he was sentenced to jail !!!!!!
If I am not mistaken Habib El-Adly is the first former minister of interior on the run in Egypt. That's an achievement somehow.
Now officially, Habib El-Adly is convicted of corruption ad he is also a fugitive.
Another very beautiful building in Downtown Cairo.
This time it is at Talaat Harb street. I think it was renovated.
Via : Instagram
On 21st March , Egypt's minister of Agriculture and the Governor of Giza inaugurated the 83rd Springs Flowers fair in Al-Orman Botanical garden as usual on the start of Spring officially.
You know I could not resist going there. I went there before in 2015 and 2016.
I went to the fair this year but I did not stay long enough in the fair to take too many photos as I used to do.
But I still managed to take a couple of beautiful photos 'I guess'.
|Beautiful orange daisies "I guess"|
|Beautiful flowers everywhere|
The space of the fair also extended 25% more than its usual space in Al-Orman botanical garden.
|Flowers at a landscape company in partition|
|Inside a landscape company in the flowers fair|
I was very curious to see the impact of the economic crisis on the fair and the industry of gardening in Egypt.
After floating the Egyptian pound value freely in front of other currencies, the whole exports sector was hit hard.
Many companies and flowers nurseries depend on foreign imported flowers , I want to see what they would do.
|Rows and rows of flowers|
|A gardener watering the flowers in one of the partitions|
|Trees with flowers at Egypt's Spring Flowers show|
Well foreign flowers, plants and trees are there like bonsai trees.
|Bonsai trees at Egypt's Spring Flowers show 2017|
This year I have seen for the first time in the Fair a flower called "American Dianthus". It looks different than the Egyptian Baladi Dianthus.
That flower nursery sold one flower pot of the American Dianthus for LE 20 so I think yes the economic crisis hit the fair and flowers industry.
Nevertheless people still buy flowers an cacti , trees and domestic herbs.
One flowers nursery sold various types of herbs like Syrian and Saudi mint in addition to Egyptian mint. I do not know the difference between them.
It also sold chives, sage and local Egyptian basil.
There was a high demand for cacti especially Aloe Vera because of the benefit especially for the hair and skin according to a friend of mine who owns a Cacti farm and participated in the fair.
|Cacti at Egypt's flowers show 2017|
My friend told me that other cacti companies sell for almost LE 50 whereas its price does not exceed LE15 .
|Short cacti at Egypt's Flowers show 2017|
I bought an Aloe Vera plant for LE 10 from him and I put in the balcony. Honestly, I do not know how to use.
|Mid-Size cacti at Egypt's flowers show 2017|
Cacti is popular in Egypt because of our weather.
My friend told me that the fair received more visitors and customers than last year despite the economic crisis.
|A lady picking up a flower pot inside a partition in the fair.|
|The bee and the flower|
The fair was like a gift from God to them. Watch the video blow to see that beautiful bee in clear HD.
As I have visited the fair three years in a row , I found out that there were landscape companies and flower nurseries that have not changed its location.
Like for instance the Egyptian German company for flower nurseries got its partition in the same place.
Instead of arranging the flowers like the Egyptian flag in 2016, it arranged the flowers like Giza pyramids.
|Pyramids of flowers|
|The arc of flowers|
Unfortunately I could not get closer or photos from inside because two friends were snapping photos amusingly by their mobile phones. I did not want to spoil their moment.
|Taking a photo inside the arc|
|Strike a post under the flowers arc|
Nevertheless I feel that the company was hit by the economic crisis. Last year's partition was more interesting if I recall correction.
|Some fancy creation made of flowers and tree branches|
|Inside a partition of a landscape company in Egypt's flowers show 2017|
|A topiary shape inside a landscape company|
|Fancy fountains inside a landscape company.|
The Fair continued to May as it was extended as usual too. This year, it continued for nearly two months.
|Amazing look violet flowers|
Here is a very short and a very shaky as usual video from the Fair.
You must watch till the end because there is something beautiful in it.
I hope that you will like it and will share it just like this post :)
I did also very quick Live periscope broadcast from the Fair itself.
A new Downtown Cairo building discovery for me: The Credit Foncier Egyptien bank building or as it is known now as Arab international bank "AIB".
Built in 1903 in its current location, the Credit Foncier Egyptian or the Egyptian Credit Foncier bank was active till its nationalization in the 1950s.
Originally Founded by Karl Heinrich and Raphael Suares in 1880 in Alexandria, it predated the National Bank of Egypt "NBE" so yes it was the oldest and first bank in Egypt. Reading more about it the Credit Foncier Egyptien Banque represented the French interests whereas the NBE represented the British interest for dominance on the Egyptian economy then.
It is no secret that there has been a rivalry between the British and French on controlling the Egyptian economy since the 19th century.
Did not know that information was till I searched online thanks to Samir Rafaat and his valuable website.
According to Rafaat's extensive research, that neo-classical building was most probably designed by the famous Miksa or Max Hertz, the Hungarian architect whom Islamic Cairo owes him a lot.
Thankfully the AIB is doing a great job in keeping the building in a very good shape, excellent shape actually.
|A familiar scene now|
Quoting an unnamed source in a very short news on its wire service, MENA added that those were blocked because their content supported terrorism and radicalism as well deliberately spread lies.
The source added that among those blocked websites: Al-Jazeera.net, Al-Sharq TV channel, Misr Al-Arabia, Al-Shaab newspaper, Arabi 21, RSSD and Hamas Online.
He also said that the legal procedures were being followed regarding those websites.
The decision was taken in Egypt in less than 24 hours of blocking Al-Jazeera and Qatari news websites in Emirates, Saudi Arabia following their fake news media war in the midnight on Tuesday.
Now we discovered the rest of the Websites are Ikhwan Online, Egypt's Window, Al-Mesryoon, Huffington Post Arabic, Qatari Al-Watan, Qatari Al-Arab , Qatari Al-Sharq, Qatari El-Raya, Cairo Portal, Klmty , Hasam militant group official website, Horriya Post, Aswat Masriya and Mada Masr. (Yes , MADA MASR !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
Yes, Mada Masr; one of the finest Egyptian online independent English and Arabic news websites in Egypt and the Arab world is banned in its own country !!!!!!
Many people including myself are extremely angry for banning Mada Masr and I am actually worried too because its journalists may pay a price as well for their great work.
Aside from the five Qatari media outlets above them Al-Jazeera and aside from Aswat Masriya and Mada Masr, most of the above websites got affiliations with the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamists in Egypt in a way or another.
Ironically this list includes Aswat Masriya, the once Reuters-affiliated Egyptian News website which closed down from two weeks ago. Currently, the archives of the website are still online !!!!
Another irony, Mada Masr, Misr Al-Arabia and Al-Mesryoon got a license officially to operate in Egypt.
Also, Al-Mesryoon got a daily printed newspaper !!
On the other hand, we got Hasam militant group which claimed responsibility for a number of attacks targeting security forces, mostly policemen since September 2016.
This is the only case I understand why the government would want to block a website.
Nevertheless, I do not know or understand on what legal basis the government decided to take this move. Is it the emergency law ??
This is a very bad sign especially if you connect it with the ongoing crackdown against political activists and members of opposition parties in the past three weeks.
We are back to use VPN and proxies once again !!!
This is not good at all.
All support to my dear friends in Mada Masr.
|Ali in custody on Tuesday by Mohamed El-Raai|
The potential presidential candidate spent the night in custody at Dokki police station. after the prosecution ordered his detention for 24 hours pending further investigations in an unprecedented move when it comes to misdemeanor according to lawyers.
The famous lawyer and founder of leftist "Bread and Liberty Party" is accused by famous lawyer Samir Sabry of giving the middle finger to his opponents in the street in January during celebrating his victory in Tiran and Sanafir lawsuit in front of State Council.
Following the historical Supreme AdministraCourtcourt verdict to reject the current Egyptian government's appeal appeal against the administrative court ruling annulling the Egyptian-Saudi deal to redraw maritime deal,a photo emerged online showing the famous lawyer giving the middle finger "the Egyptian style" to his opponents while he was being held on the shoulders of his protesters.
Some say the photo was genuine and it was one for a less than a second.
Others say it was a "photoshopped" fake photo and he did not give the middle finger to anyone.
Needless to say, the Pro-regime media went mad and used that alleged photo to smear Khaled Ali who won huge popularity following the verdict.
Ignoring the implication and the importance of the Supreme administrative court, the regime media portrayed the longtime leftist activist as rude and vulgar with no decency.
In the same month in January, the very active concerned citizen and lawyer Samir Sabry reported Ali to the prosecution for "making an obscene act on a public street".
Then the prosecution summoned Ali on Tuesday after 4 months and interrogated him then surprisingly it ordered his detention 24 hours pending investigations.
Now there are two explanations or theories for what has happened to the leftist lawyer in the past 48 hours.
Khaled Ali who ran for presidential office in 2012 is one of the few names suggested to run once again for the presidency against Abdel Fattah El-Sisi in the upcoming 2018 elections.
In the first stage of the 2012 presidential elections, Ali got 134,056 votes "0.58%" only in the votes
Still, his popularity grew hugely as an independent civilian candidate after the Tiran and Sanafir lawsuits to the level that his ultra-leftist views are completely ignored.
If Ali is found guilty by the misdemeanor court then he will be disqualified right away of running for the office.
Yes, he can appeal if he is found guilty but till the appeal is accepted and he wins the case, he can not run for the office.
Ironically Ali has not officially declared that he will run for the office yet.
In fact, in an interview with BBC Arabic in June 2016, the lawyer stated he did not intend to run in the upcoming 2018 elections wondering at the same time if Egypt was going to have any presidential elections in the future at all.
Still, his name is always mentioned as he showed huge political maturity in Tiran and Sanafir crisis in the past few months that made him gain lots of fans.
Many believe that what happened in the past 48 hours is an attempt to get rid of potential presidential candidate.
It is worth to mention that Ali's detention came as there is an ongoing huge crackdown against young Egyptian activists especially party's members above them Khaled Ali's own "Bread an Liberty party".
In the past three weeks, not less than 28 Egyptian activists and opposition parties members were arrested throughout the country for a number of strange like owning books, believing in Mohamed ElBaradei's thoughts and attacking the regime
in men's only closed Facebook group !!
I can't ignore the fact this is happening as the parliament is getting ready to discuss and most probably pass the Tiran and Sanafir agreement starting next week.
Personally, I believe someone is getting trying from that lawyer who has been giving the government hard time since the time of Mubarak.
The Khaled Ali hashtag in Arabic has been active in Egypt for several hours. Also, Ali's supporters launched "The popular campaign to support Khaled Ali for president 2018" on Facebook and it gained followers in no time.
We will see what happens next week inshallah.
In that BBC interview in June 2016, Ali stated that he was ready to go to jail because of Tiran and Sanafir.
I am worried that that may happen after all.