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Egypt Media Roundup (January 9)

[Protest against the Tiran and Sanafir agreement on Monday, 2 January, 2017. Photo from Aswat Masriya.] [Protest against the Tiran and Sanafir agreement on Monday, 2 January, 2017. Photo from Aswat Masriya.]

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Egypt and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Egypt Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to egypt@jadaliyya.com by Sunday night of every week.] 

Political Rights

Confessions of 4 additional suspects arrested in church bombing broadcast on TV The Interior Ministry announced on Wednesday that it has arrested four additional suspects implicated in the December bombing of St. Peter and St. Paul Church. Although the suspects have not yet been referred to court, footage of their confessions, filmed by police personnel, was aired on television.

Photos: Police arrest protesters objecting to handover of Tiran and Sanafir Police arrested at least ten protesters in downtown Cairo on Monday afternoon and blocked access to the space outside the Journalists Syndicate. The detainees were protesting the Cabinet’s approval of a controversial agreement to hand over the Red Sea islands of Tiran and Sanafir to Saudi Arabia, and its referral of the agreement to Parliament ahead of a judicial verdict on the case.

Court detains 12 protesters for 15 days pending trial Abdeen court decided on Thursday to detain twelve protesters for fifteen days pending trial.

Uncertainty looms over 11 January protest against Egypt-Saudi islands deal Uncertainty looms over calls for demonstration Wednesday against the Egyptian-Saudi Red Sea islands deal after the interior ministry refused an official notification of the protest by the organizing parties.

Security refuses to receive notification for island protest Sayeda Zeinab Police Station refused to receive notification for a protest planned by the “Egypt is not for Sale” group over the cabinet’s decision to hand sovereignty of two Red Sea islands to Saudi Arabia, member of the group Abdel Aziz al-Hosseiny told Mada Masr on Saturday.

Judge implicated in corruption case found dead in prison cell Former State Council Secretary General Wael Shalaby was found dead inside his prison cell hours after the prosecution issued a four-day detention order on Monday, pending investigation into allegations that he was involved in a corruption case.

Forensic report confirms senior judge committed suicide in jail - prosecution The forensic report on the death of Senior Judge Wael Shalaby confirmed that he had committed suicide inside his cell, Egypt's public prosecution said on Thursday.

A corpse, bag of cash and contested land: Clues threading corruption into the challenge to judicial independence A high-level corruption case implicating the State Council came to light as Parliament began discussing a proposed legal amendment granting the president more power to appoint judicial authorities.

Cairo court refers trial of Mubarak-era multi-billionaire, Hussein Salem, to appeals court without issuing a verdict In a surprise move, Cairo Criminal Court due to issue its verdict on the freezing of the assets of multibillionaire Hussein Salem, referred the case to the Cairo Appeals Court without issuing its own verdict on Wednesday.

Photographer to be detained for 15 days for alleged links to Al Jazeera State Security Prosecution ordered the detention of photographer Reem Qotb for fifteen days pending investigations into links to the Qatari-based Al Jazeera network.

6 Nubian activists briefly detained for protesting new presidential decree over land Six Nubian activists were briefly detained on Monday for protesting against a new presidential decree regarding land ownership in the Nubian West Aswan village, before being released by the prosecution on 200 LE bail each Wednesday afternoon.

Court refers two to Grand Mufti over violence outside US embassy in 2013 The Cairo Criminal Court referred two, out of twenty-three defendants, to the Grand Mufti to review death sentences handed to them over complicity in violence that erupted in front of the US embassy in 2013.

What has happened to the NGO law? More than thirty days have passed since Parliament approved the NGO law and there is still no word from the president. According to the Constitution, this is the deadline for the president to have a say on any law submitted to him.

Egypt's Sisi ratifies law establishing first ever media workers’ syndicate Egypt’s president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi ratified on Wednesday a law that establishes a media workers’ syndicate, expanding the scope of regulation over various media channels.

Moushira Khattab condemns closure of rights activist Gamal Eid’s Al-Karama libraries Diplomat Moushira Khattab visited one of the five Al-Karama libraries, founded by the prominent human rights activist Gamal Eid, in the Cairo district of Dar al-Salam on Tuesday. During her visit to the shuttered library she condemned continued attempts to close such public spaces for learning.

Activist Ahmed Maher released after ending prison terms Activist Ahmed Maher was released on Thursday, three days after he ended two prison terms.

Questions surround murder of Coptic Alexandrian alcohol vendor Investigations are ongoing into Tuesday’s brutal murder of a Coptic shop owner in Alexandria who sold alcohol. Police arrested a fifty-year-old suspect on Wednesday, identified as ‘Adel M.S.

Infighting among the Free Egyptians A wave of internal disputes is rocking the boat of the Free Egyptian Party, one of Egypt’s most active political parties since the 25 January revolution.

Egypt’s Consumer Protection Agency refers Orange and Vodafone to prosecution for misleading ads The Consumer Protection Agency referred telecoms companies Orange and Vodafone to the prosecution on Tuesday for misleading consumers in adverts claiming they each offer the best 4G services in Egypt, when neither company has fully launched this service.

ElBaradei criticises airing of 'wiretapped' phone calls Former Egyptian Vice President for Foreign Affairs Mohamed ElBaradei said early on Sunday that airing leaked phone calls of political opponents on TV is a sign of "fascism".   

Economy

Egyptian importers face bankruptcy after currency float Mohsen al-Gedamy has run a successful business for the past seven years importing beans, a staple food for many Egyptians, but after the currency was suddenly floated late last year he now faces bankruptcy, an increasingly common situation among Egyptian importers.

Egypt approves bankruptcy law to spur investment The Egyptian cabinet approved on Wednesday the country's first bankruptcy law, Justice Minister Hossam Abdelrahim said, part of an economic reform drive aimed at encouraging investment.

Egypt's foreign debt increase 185% in three months Egypt's foreign debt jumped 185 percent from July to September 2016, according to the monthly report of the Central Bank of Egypt on Thursday.

Egypt's non-oil business activity shrinks for 15th consecutive month, but decline slows Business activity in Egypt shrank for the fifteenth consecutive month in December, although at a slower pace than the previous month, as inflation caused purchase costs to rise at a near-record pace, a survey showed on Wednesday.

Foreign Relations

Israeli tour group visits Egypt for 1st time in 18 months The first Israeli tour group to travel through Egypt in eighteen months arrived in the country earlier this week, reflecting a warming of relations between the two states. However neither the exact number of tourists nor the date of their arrival has been officially disclosed.

Egypt's FM discusses bilateral relations with Ethiopian counterpart Egypt's Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry discussed on Tuesday with his Ethiopian counterpart minister Workineh Gebeyehu Egyptian-Ethiopian bilateral relations and congratulated him on becoming the country’s top diplomat.

Domestic Security

One dead, three held in connection with Cairo bomb attack One suspect was killed and three others arrested in a police raid in connection with a bomb attack that killed six policemen in Cairo on 9 December, the Interior Ministry said on Thursday.

Egypt army thwarts attacks on North Sinai checkpoints The Egyptian army has foiled a plot by militants to attack a number of security checkpoints on Friday morning.

Arabic

اثنين الأرض» من أسوان للقاهرة.. الأمن يقبض على 8 من «القافلة النوبية».. ويفض وقفة «تيران وصنافير» ويضبط 12» Security forces disperses two protests in Aswan and Cairo, one related to the Nubian caravan and the right to return and the second against the two red sea islands demarcation agreement.

بعد انتحار وائل شلبي في محبسه.. النائب العام يحظر النشر في قضية الرشوة الكبرى بمجلس الدولة Egypt’s public prosecutor banned media reporting on the Council of State corruption case after former Secretary-General of the Council State Wael Shalaby committed suicide in prison.

رئيس «الاتحاد النوبي»: اعتقال 8 شباب أثناء توجههم لوقفةغرب أسوان والاعتداءعليهم واتهامهم بضرب ضباط Eight Nubians were reportedly arrested when they were heading to Aswan to join protests on Nubian right to return.

التحالف الشعبي» يطالب بالإفراج عن المتظاهرين المحتجزين: مارسوا حقهم في الاعتراض على مخالفة الدستور في أزمة تيران وصنافير» Liberties coalition call on the public prosecutor to urgently release the detained demonstrators who took part in the peaceful protest against Tiran and Sanafir agreement.

المركزي»: الدين الخارجي يتجاوز 60 مليار دولار في الربع الأول من العام المالي» Egypt’s Central Bank reports an increase in foreign debt in the first quarter of 2016-2017 up to 60.153 billion USD.

حبس 3 متهمين في تفجير "البطرسية" 15 يوما على ذمة التحقيق Three defendants investigated in the Btroseya church bombing case imprisoned for fifteen days.

«مصر مش للبيع": حبس 12 من متظاهري الأرض سبب جديد للغضب على السلطة ولن يزيدنا إلا صلابة ورفضا" “Egypt is not for sale” campaign denounced the fifteen days detention of twelve protesters against the land demarcation agreement.

وقع.. ارتفاع الموقعين على وثيقة «رفض إحالة تيران وصنافير» للبرلمان لـ أكثر من 7 آلاف: لا للتفريط في الوطن “Statement to the Nation” petition gathered over seven thousand signatures in opposition to the maritime border demarcation agreement.

البورصة تربح 13.2 مليار جنيه في أول أسبوع من 2017 Egyptian stock market gains increased to two percent during the first week of 2017.

 الكاتدرائية تستعد لقداس عيد الميلاد المجيد Coptic Christmas day in Egypt was celebrated amidst tight security.

حبس ضابط سنة مع إيقاف التنفيذ وبراءة آخر فى قتلهم محتجز بقسم مدينة نصر Cairo Criminal Court issues one year prison sentence for a police officer accused of killing a prisoner.

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