<![CDATA[rss-All News]]> All Rights Reserved for The Cairo post <![CDATA[All News]]>]]> 100 29 <![CDATA[Development in Egyptian-French political ties contributes to boosting tourism:Tourism min.]]>
In statements to MENA on the fringe of the 39th edition of the IFTM Top Resa - MAP Pro trade fair in Paris, Rashed voiced hope to work under a comprehensive strategy to activate tourism in Egypt - which is one of mainstays of the Egyptian economy.

During a meeting on Sunday with French ambassador in Cairo Stéphane Romatet, Rashed stressed the importance of beefing up the number of direct flights between the two countries.

The talks also took up the Tourism Ministry's program to promote tourism and increase revenues from the tourism sector.

For his part, the French ambassador expressed his country's readiness to cooperate with the Tourism Ministry to increase the number of French tourists in Egypt.

He lauded efforts exerted by the Egyptian government to secure archaeological sites, expecting the number of French tourists visiting Egypt to increase in the coming period.

IFTM Top Resa - MAP Pro trade fair aims to become the single most privileged platform for all major players in the industry. The fair has become today a true multi-segment event bringing together in one place leisure, business, events and groups at a French and international level.]]>
9/26/2017 2:37:35 PM
<![CDATA[Analyst calls US sanctioning of terrorist groups to reinforce relations with Egypt]]>
The article comes amid an intricate phase between the United States and Egypt as the former halted $400 million last month in pre-dominantly military assistance over concern regarding the human rights status in the Egypt.

The author argues that such measure against Hasm and Liwaa al-Thawra terrorist groups might improve the relations between both countries.

“But with the stakes in the Mideast sky-high these days, America cannot afford to jeopardize an alliance that has been one of its most critical in the region for the past 40 years. Remember: Egypt has strong ties with Israel, takes a no-nonsense stance against Islamist violence and has helped fight the Islamic State,” Schanzer said.

The analyst emphasized that would send a positive message to the Egyptian people and demonstrate “America’s own commitment to fighting terror.”

Both groups were formed following the ouster of former President Mohamed Morsi, who is a member of the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, after mass protests took place on July 3, 2013. Both groups conducted a series of assassinations on judiciary and security personnel, and attacks on checkpoints.

“It is clear the two groups meet federal-government criteria for the terrorist label, making them obvious candidates for Treasury’s targeted financial-sanctions program. They might also meet the State Department’s definition of a Foreign Terrorist Organization, though that designation process is more of a political minefield,” Schanzer explained.
9/26/2017 2:30:58 PM
<![CDATA[NBE collects $13.5B in foreign currencies 11 months]]>
The NBE collected LE 330 billion ($18 billion) from the “Platinum” certificates with interest rates of 16 and 20 percent and investment certificates (Group B) in 11 months.

In July, NBE said that it will

hike its interest rates


savings accounts

by 0.5 percent as of August.

The move comes in response to the Central Bank of Egypt’s decision to raise interest rates by 200 basis points on July 7. ]]>
9/26/2017 2:29:01 PM
<![CDATA[Trump pushing Afghan president to close Taliban office in Qatar]]>
Ghani is expected to agree to the closure, but a final decision has not yet been reached. The issue was raised at a meeting between the two leaders on Thursday.

The Afghan leadership sees the 36-strong informal delegation in Doha – which the Taliban calls its ‘political office’ – as doing nothing to facilitate peace talks, merely conferring political legitimacy on a group Kabul views as no more than a tool of Pakistan.

Trump is said to be hostile to the maintenance of the Taliban office for several reasons. He portrays it as a failed initiative of his predecessor that had not led to the peace negotiations Barack Obama had hoped for. Meanwhile, the Saudi and Emirati monarchies have been pressuring for its closure since its inception, seeing it as a symbol of Doha’s diplomatic prestige and US-Qatari ties.

A request to close the office would have to be formally initiated by Kabul, but the ultimate decision would lie with the Qatari government.

According to one source close to the diplomatic exchanges, the office has become collateral damage of the continuing Saudi-Qatari standoff.

Saudi Arabia and three other countries - Bahrain, Egypt, and the United Arab Emirates – have been locked in a dispute with Qatar since June because of claims that Qatar supports Iran and Islamists and funds terrorism. Qatar has denied the claims.

Trump has offered to mediate in that dispute while indicating strongly he shared Riyadh’s view of the dispute. The US president is believed to have raised the issue of the Taliban office at a meeting last Tuesday with the emir of Qatar, Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani.

In February, Ghani told the Qatari foreign minister during a security conference in Munich that the Taliban office should be closed.

It is not known whether Tamim agreed to close the office, but he is eager to cultivate support from Washington at a time when his country has been subjected to a crippling economic blockade by neighbours.]]>
9/26/2017 2:25:21 PM
<![CDATA[Boycotting countries presented Doha as “gift” to Iran: Qatari FM]]>Arab boycott of the tiny emirate of Qatar, Doha has gone all-out in outreaching to Iran, Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdul Rahman Al-Thani announced on Tuesday.

On the sidelines of a press conference held at the French Institute for International Relations, the Qatari Foreign Minister expressed his country’s support towards dialogue to solve the current dilemma, reiterating condemnation and complete disapproval of the Arab demands that were delivered to Doha for reconciliation.

"I'm wondering if the primary goal of the Arab quartet was to force Qatar out of the Gulf Cooperation Council to find itself compelled to get closer to Iran," the Minister added, explaining that they led Doha to be presented as a "gift" to Tehran.

Answering reporters’ questions on the dispute, Sheikh Bin Abdul Rahman said that he strongly felt the American administration’s urges for the dialogue as a way out of the current crisis.

The Qatari Minister further claimed that the decision of the four countries to impose a “blockade” on Qatar is one definition of terrorism, “An attempt to impose policies that violate its own policies, a clear-cut scheme to bring about a change in the regime.”

Since June 5, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates have turned on Qatar with a complete air and trade boycott over allegations of its support and sponsorship of terrorism, which Doha denies.
9/26/2017 2:21:07 PM
<![CDATA[Kids who see guns in movies may be more apt to play with firearms]]>
For the experiment, researchers had children watch a 20-minute clip from the PG-rated films “The Rocketeer” or “National Treasure.” The kids were randomly assigned to watch either an unedited version of the clip, or a version in which scenes showing guns were edited out but the action and narrative of the film were not altered.

After watching the movie, the children were taken to a different room with a cabinet full of toys and were told they could play with any of the toys and games in the room. One drawer of the cabinet contained a real 0.38-caliber handgun that had been modified so it could not fire, although the gun’s hammer and trigger were still functional.

During 20 minutes of playtime in the room, the movie scene kids saw didn’t appear to influence whether they found the gun or handled it, researchers report in JAMA Pediatrics.

It’s not clear why the movies didn’t appear to influence whether children picked up the guns to play, said study co-author Brad Bushman, a psychology researcher at Ohio State University in Columbus.

“But those who did handle the gun held it longer and pulled the trigger more times if they saw a movie with guns than if they saw a movie without guns,” Bushman said by email.

“Past research has shown that kids who see movie characters smoke are more likely to smoke themselves, and kids who see movie characters drink alcohol are more likely to drink alcohol themselves,” Bushman added. “Movies with alcohol have a warning, and movies with cigarettes also have a warning, and I think movies with guns should have a warning too.”

When kids did grab the gun, the ones who had seen movie characters with a gun pulled the trigger roughly three times on average, the study found. By contrast, the children who hadn’t see a gun in the movie rarely, if ever, pulled the trigger at all.

In addition, half of the kids who had observed movie characters using firearms held the gun for 53 seconds or more, the study found. When kids had not seen a gun in the movie scene, half of them held the gun for about 11 seconds or less.

The experiment included 104 children between 8 and 12 years old who were either related or friends. They watched the movie scenes in pairs and then went to the playroom together afterward.

Overall, 43 pairs of kids, or about 83 percent, found the gun in the cabinet drawer.

Children in just 14 of the pairs gave the gun to a research assistant or told them about it when they found it.

In 22 of the pairs, one or both children handled the gun.

Beyond its small size, other limitations of the study include the fact that only one modified handgun was available in the playroom, and the results might have been different if more firearms were in the room, the authors note.

“Keep in mind that kids have plenty of exposure to guns in many other settings, TV news, other movies, social media streams etc., plus they have an innate interest in them, so it is NOT surprising that they all handled them,” said Dr. Dimitri Christakis, author of an accompanying editorial and researcher at the Center for Child Health, Behavior and Development at Seattle Children’s Research Institute.

“Having just seen some being discharged however, did impact their likelihood of FIRING them,” Christakis said by email.

Because gun ownership and violent images in the media are widespread in the U.S., the study results underscore the importance of safe gun storage, Christakis added.

This can include storing firearms unloaded and locked, separate from ammunition, doctors advise.

“This is not about gun control,” Christakis said. “It’s about responsible ownership.”
9/26/2017 2:18:31 PM
<![CDATA[Attackers shoot 3 women, 2 men to death at house in Mexico]]>
The Puebla state prosecutors' office says the women ranged in age from 16 to 23. The men were 24 and 41.

There was no immediate information on motive. But the prosecutor's office said Monday that the shooting happened at a house in the city of Huauchinango where officials found packages of marijuana after the attack.

Puebla has seen an increase in violence related to drugs, fuel theft and robbery from trains.]]>
9/26/2017 2:16:24 PM
<![CDATA[BBC launches new Korean language service]]>
The service, a part of the BBC's biggest global expansion since the 1940s, will have a dedicated team of journalists in Seoul, London and Washington.

"Audiences in the Korean peninsula and Korean speakers around the world can now hear radio broadcasts and access the latest news online," the BBC World Service said in a statement.

"BBC News Korean will build on the long-standing reputation for fairness and impartiality the BBC World Service has earned all over the world," said Francesca Unsworth, director of the BBC World Service.

A BBC World Service spokesman said without giving further details that monitoring by the BBC had shown that "at least part" of the new broadcasts were getting through to North Korea despite "jamming".

The service is broadcast on shortwave for three hours a day and one hour on medium wave, seven days a week.

The BBC in its statement provided the times for the transmissions both in Seoul and Pyongyang.

Listeners could face heavy punishment for tuning in in North Korea, which was ranked the second worst country in the world for censorship after Turkmenistan by US human rights group Freedom House.

Korean is one of 12 new BBC services being rolled out this year thanks to a £291 million (332 million euro, $393 million) grant from the British government, including broadcasts in Pidgin, Punjabi and Yoruba.]]>
9/26/2017 2:13:25 PM
<![CDATA[Food aid, face masks dispatched to Bali as 75,000 flee volcano]]>
Mount Agung, 75 kilometres (47 miles) from the resort hub of Kuta, has been rumbling since August and threatening to erupt for the first time since 1963 -- a potential blow to the country's lucrative tourism industry.

Increasingly frequent tremors show that the molten magma is still rising towards the surface, with the mountain entering a "critical phase", said the national disaster mitigation agency.

It said the number fleeing their homes had increased as fears grow that the mountain could blow.

"The local mitigation agency reported that until 12 pm Tuesday, the number has reached 75,673 people, spread across 377 evacuation centres in nine districts," said agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho.

Around 62,000 people lived in the danger zone before the evacuations, according to the agency, but residents just outside the area have also left as a precaution.

"The number is expected to continue to rise," Nugroho said.

The Indonesian Center for Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation said there has been an increase in volcanic tremors, with a total of 564 recorded Monday.

Evacuees have packed into temporary shelters or moved in with relatives. Some 2,000 cows have also been evacuated from the flanks of the volcano.

President Joko Widodo was due to visit crammed evacuation centres in Bali on Tuesday afternoon.

Balinese residents, international NGOs and the central government have begun organising aid.

Vehicles loaded with noodles, mineral water and blankets have been sent to the evacuation centres, while residents around the island have been collecting donations.

Bali's "sister village" programme and tradition of communal assistance means evacuees have been able to stay in villages outside the danger zone.

I Ketut Subandi, head of logistics at the village of Tana Ampo, said basic food items like rice, instant noodles, cooking oil and water were most needed.

"This morning we were worried because we had limited rice supply, but now we have received more rice stocks from donors," Subandi said.

Indonesia's national disaster agency has sent 640,000 face masks, 12,500 mattresses, 8,400 blankets and 50 tents. The central government has a relief fund totalling nearly $150 million to meet the cost of natural disasters, which could be tapped in case of an eruption.

Officials announced the highest possible alert level on Friday due to the increasing volcanic activity and warned people to stay at least nine kilometres away from the crater.

Operators have cancelled trekking tours on the mountain but officials have otherwise been at pains to assure tourists the island is safe.

The airport in Bali's capital Denpasar, through which millions of foreign tourists pass every year, has not been affected, but several countries including Australia and Singapore have issued a travel advisory.

Flights to and from the island have not been interrupted but airlines are watching the situation closely.

Virgin Australia said it would be making an extra fuel stop in Darwin for some of its flights between Australia and Bali in case it is forced to turn back.

Singapore Airlines said customers travelling between September 23 and October 2 could rebook flights or ask for a refund.

Mount Agung is one of more than 120 active volcanoes extending the length of Indonesia, which straddles the Pacific Ring of Fire.

It last erupted in 1963, killing nearly 1,600 people and sending ash as far as the capital Jakarta.]]>
9/26/2017 2:11:03 PM
<![CDATA[Interpol meets in Beijing as China hunts for fugitives]]>
Some 1,000 public security officials and political leaders will discuss terrorism, organised crime and cybercrime at the four-day gathering.

Interpol eases the exchange of information between police forces from 190 countries and is therefore a crucial tool for China, whose President Xi Jinping has led an intensive crackdown on corruption that has extended beyond his country's borders.

Xi called for "global security governance" as he addressed the assembly.

"Countries should adopt a concept of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security, and jointly respond to security challenges," he said, according to the official Xinhua news agency.

Since 2014 Beijing has pursued its citizens abroad in what it calls "Operation Fox Hunt", seeking to repatriate allegedly corrupt officials who have fled.

Authorities say at least 2,500 nationals suspected of economic crimes have already been brought back.

Most Western countries including the United States do not have extradition treaties with China, where courts are overseen by the Communist Party and the use of force by police to extract confessions is believed to be common.

But at the request of member states, Interpol, which is based in the French city of Lyon, issues "red notices" -- non-binding notifications of arrest warrants.

Human rights groups have raised concerns since Chinese public security vice minister Meng Hongwei was chosen as Interpol president last year.

"Interpol needs to explain how it will avoid becoming an arm of the Chinese government abroad, using red notices against dissidents and forcing people back to torture in China," said Human Rights Watch's China director Sophie Richardson, adding that the organisation's "credibility is on the line".

The dissident Wei Jingcheng, exiled in the US since 1997, said he feared that Beijing would use the international police institution to "repatriate political opponents".

The Chinese foreign ministry rejected such concerns as "unfounded".

Another issue likely to cause tensions at the general assembly is the Palestinian Authority's bid to join Interpol, which Israel opposes.]]>
9/26/2017 2:08:32 PM
<![CDATA[1st Saudi-Sudanese trade forum kicks off in Khartoum]]>
The forum is co-organized by the Federation of Sudanese Chambers of Commerce and the Saudi Export Development Authority.

The Sudanese ministers of trade, international cooperation and investment were present at the event, along with the Saudi ambassador in Khartoum and the head of Saudi Export Development Authority.

The economic gathering is a positive step toward boosting economic and trade relations between Saudi Arabia and Sudan, Sudanese National Chamber of Importers CEO Mohammed Abbas Gadallah told MENA correspondent.

He added that the forum includes working sessions to discuss aspects and mechanisms of cooperation, as well as means of removing obstacles facing the movement of goods between Saudi Arabia and Sudan.]]>
9/26/2017 2:06:30 PM
<![CDATA[Asymmetrical cuts by Japan's Ujoh close Milan Fashion Week]]>
Ujoh, established in Tokyo, showcased in Milan in 2015 a collection at an event for emerging international designers, sponsored by Italy’s national fashion association. Nishizaki held his first show last year, with the patronage of fashion scion Giorgio Armani, a great supporter of young creative talents.

“Milan is where I really started and it is a valid platform for emerging designers... it is good because young people can confront themselves with other people and other countries,” Nishizaki told reporters.

After spending time in his home country he said he intended to go back to what he called “the international wave”.

Designs for Ujoh’s spring summer 2018 collection were mainly asymmetrical, with layered looks and elegant masculine styles.

“I believe that asymmetric cutting particularly fits spring.. with a balance attained thanks to the use of light fabrics,” Nishizaki said.

Slits in the sleeves, open cuts and parts of clothes bunched by drawcord created simple overlaying effects.

Styles were mainly in the colours of black, white and navy blue, with splashes of magenta red, gold, camel and flower pattern prints in beige and light blue and red.

Models wore one shoulder overalls, parachute-style light raincoats, zigzag cut vests, oversize shirts and coats with wide pockets.

“It’s been a positive and particularly rich week, with shows by big names as well as young talents, like Ujoh,” Italy’s fashion association President Carlo Capasa told Reuters.

He added that the six-day fashion extravaganza in the Italian fashion capital - with almost 160 collections showcased and a multitude of presentations and events - had made Milan more relevant on the international fashion scene.

“What do you want more than this? It has been the most beautiful Fashion Week Milan has hosted in the last years,” Capasa added.]]>
9/26/2017 2:01:29 PM
<![CDATA[US wants diplomatic end to North Korea crisis: Mattis]]>
"We maintain the capability to deter North Korea's most dangerous threats but also to back up our diplomats in a manner that keeps this as long as possible in the diplomatic realm," he said in New Delhi after talks with his Indian counterpart.

"That is our goal, to solve this diplomatically, and I believe that President Trump has been very clear on this issue," the US defence chief said.

President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un have become embroiled in a bitter war of words after the North detonated its sixth nuclear bomb and test-fired intercontinental missiles -- saying it needs to defend itself against the threat of a US invasion.

Pyongyang's nuclear weapons ambitions -- including a suggestion last week that it could test an H-bomb over the Pacific -- has increased international fears of conflict.

Alarm over Pyongyang's nuclear and ballistic missile programmes dominated this year's gathering of world leaders at the United Nations General Assembly.

Mattis said the United States was continuing to put pressure on the North's leadership through diplomatic channels.

"We continue to maintain the diplomatically-led effort in the United Nations. You have seen unanimous United Nations Security Council resolutions passed that have increased the pressure, economic pressure and diplomatic pressure, on the North," he said.]]>
9/26/2017 1:59:51 PM
<![CDATA[Winter Olympics will be safe despite nuclear threat:South Korea]]>
The Pyeongchang Winter Games will be held from February 9-25 only 80 kilometres (50 miles) from the heavily guarded border with the nuclear-armed North.

French and Austrian officials last week raised the prospect of not sending athletes as US and North Korean leaders intensified their war of words.

Seoul's foreign ministry played down the security fears, saying it is working through diplomatic channels to reassure the participants.

"The South Korean government is doing its utmost to ensure that the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics and Paralympics will be safe," said ministry spokesman Noh Kyu-Duk.

"As of now, no country has officially said it will not participate."

Tensions have soared following Pyongyang's sixth and most powerful nuclear test on September 3, which triggered a heated volley of threats and personal insults between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un.

Trump has threatened to "totally destroy" North Korea, while Kim hit back with a personal attack on Trump -- branding him "mentally deranged" and warning he would pay dearly for his threats.

In the latest episode of the saga, the North's foreign minister claimed on Monday that Trump's latest comments amounted to a declaration of war.

But the head of the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics Lee Hee-Beom said earlier this month there was no "plan B" to move the Games and next year's event would have "perfect security" despite the nuclear tensions.

The South has successfully staged several international sporting events including the 2002 football World Cup despite decades of military tensions on the peninsula.

The 1988 Seoul summer Olympics took place only months after a bomb planted by North Korean agents killed all 115 people on board a South Korean plane, in an apparent attempt to scare off foreign spectators and contestants.]]>
9/26/2017 1:57:47 PM
<![CDATA[Mumford & Sons to perform after-race concert at Abu Dhabi F1]]>
Mumford & Sons are one of the most successful folk artists of the 21st century, with their previous albums having topped records in the UK and U.S. Recently, the band played to an audience of over 65,000 at Hyde Park during the 2013 Glastonbury Festival.

The band had previously been at the UK festival Latitude 2017, and will be joining singers Calvin Harris and P!NK for the Grand Prix. P!NK will be coming in with tracks from her upcoming album "Beautiful Trauma."

Access to the show requires tickets for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
9/26/2017 1:56:20 PM
<![CDATA[Iranian Kurds march in support of independence vote in northern Iraq]]>
Iranian officials and media have denounced Monday's vote as a threat to regional stability, adding to pressure from Baghdad, threats from Iran and Turkey, and international warnings that it may ignite yet more conflict in the Mideast.

Undaunted by years of official suppression of dissent, residents in a number of mainly Kurdish cities in northwestern Iran danced in circles as night fell on Monday, chanting slogans praising Kurdish nationalist movements.

Videos posted on social media showed drivers beeping their car horns in celebration and people clapping in the cities of Marivan and Baneh. Many wore masks so as not to be identified by the security forces.

About 30 million ethnic Kurds are scattered across the region but have no country of their own. With 8 to 10 million living in Iran, Tehran fears pressure for secession will grow among a minority which has a long history of struggle for its political rights.

A strong police presence tried to control the celebrating crowd. There were reports of clashes between the demonstrators and security forces in the cities of Mahabad and Sanandaj.

In Sanandaj the crowd waved the flag of Kurdistan, a banned symbol for the Kurds' desire for independence.

"This referendum will encourage Iranian Kurds to be more determined to seek their rights," said Zaribar, a Marivan resident and member of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan, a secular armed group which launches periodic attacks in Iran.

"This referendum was not a threat to Iraq's neighbours, but it's a starting point to resolve the issues of Kurds, especially in Iran," added Zaribar, who declined to give his full name.

Tehran announced a ban on direct flights to and from Iraqi Kurdistan on Sunday at the request of the central government in Baghdad and called for a land blockade of the autonomous region by all neighbouring countries.

The fighter jets of the Iranian army flew over western provinces of Iran as part of a military drill, including the Kurdish cities of Sardasht and Oshnavieh.


Although many Iranian Kurds would like to copy the referendum model, the road to autonomy or independence would be more difficult under the Islamic Republic's theocratic rule and its military might.

The Revolutionary Guards have put down unrest in Kurdish areas for decades, and the hardline judiciary has sentenced many activists to long jail terms or death.

Iran sent Guards Commander Qassem Soleimani to northern Iraq last week in a failed final effort to persuade the Kurdistan regional government from holding the referendum.

The result has yet to be announced but is expected to be a resounding "yes" to independence.

One Kurd from Baneh, who gave his name as Arbaba, said he was exhilarated "from the bottom of my heart for victory in the referendum". However, he was worried it would increase pressure on Iranian Kurds to prevent them from going down the same path. "The Iranian regime will militarise the Kurdish areas even more," Arbaba said.

For the Iranian state the referendum of the Kurds' demand for state of their own was a "Zionist plot" aimed at bringing instability to the region.

"This view that a wandering scattered nation would only find peace if they find a homeland, was the core philosophy for creation of Israel," wrote the Kayhan, a hardline newspaper closely associated with Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Iranian cleric Abolfazl Najafi Tehrani criticised the historic treatment of the Kurds across the region.

"Unfortunately in Iraq, Iran and Turkey, the central governments have not provided Kurds and other residents of border areas with welfare facilities and economic development they deserve," Najafi, a political activist, told Reuters from Tehran. "That is why Kurds do not want the rule of any central governments."]]>
9/26/2017 1:54:54 PM
<![CDATA[Russian MoD builds Euphrates bridge in Syria for transportation services]]>
"We used unmanned aerial vehicles. During the installation work, explosive substances and grenades were falling on us from above. Nevertheless, we had no losses — no wounded, no victims. Everything was done on time," Burovtsev said.

Moreover, according to Burovtsev, the bridge will also be used to deliver humanitarian aid to liberated villages and evacuate wounded people. Prior to construction of the bridge only some units of the Syrian army were able to cross the river.

The total length of the crossing is nearly 700 feet, while the capacity is 8,000 vehicles per day.]]>
9/26/2017 1:51:01 PM
<![CDATA[Japan kills 177 whales in Pacific campaign: government]]>
Three ships which left port in June returned with 43 minke whales and 134 sei whales, the number stipulated beforehand, according to the country's fisheries agency.

Japan is a signatory to the International Whaling Commission's (IWC) moratorium on hunting, but exploits a loophole which allows whales to be killed in the name of scientific research.

The studies are "necessary to estimate the precise number of (sustainable) catches as we look to restart commercial whaling", agency official Kohei Ito told AFP.

Norway -- which does not consider itself bound by the 1986 moratorium -- and Iceland are the only countries in the world that authorise commercial whaling.

Tokyo claims it is trying to prove the whale population is large enough to sustain a return to commercial hunting for a traditional source of food.

But Japanese consumer demand for whale meat has declined significantly over the years, raising the question of whether such hunts still make economic sense.

Foreign pressure on Japan to stop whaling has only made conservatives and politicians more resolute about continuing. It is a rare thorny issue in Tokyo's otherwise amiable diplomacy.

In 2014 the United Nations' International Court of Justice (ICJ) ordered Tokyo to end a regular hunt in the Antarctic waters, saying the project did not meet conventional scientific standards.

Japan cancelled its 2014-15 hunt, only to resume it the following year under a new programme -- saying the fresh plan is genuinely scientific.

Its hunt in the Antarctic has seen clashes on the high seas between Japanese whalers and animal rights activists.]]>
9/26/2017 1:49:14 PM
<![CDATA[Mulla, Technip top official review progress in Medor lab expansion]]>
The Italian company is carrying out expansions of Medor lab and establishing a complex for diesel oil hydrogen cracking at an oil refinery lab in the Upper Egypt governorate of Assiut, the minister said in a statement.

The two projects with 3.7 billion dollar investment are vital for securing needed fuel supplies for local market and cutting imports.

The Medor lab expansion will up the lab's refining capacity by 60 percent to stand at 175,000 barrels per day, he said. Petroleum Minister Tareq Mulla reviewed on Tuesday with Marco Villa, the President of Technip Region EMIA(4), the progress realized so far in two projects being implemented by the company.

The Italian company is carrying out expansions of Medor lab and establishing a complex for diesel oil hydrogen cracking at an oil refinery lab in the Upper Egypt governorate of Assiut, the minister said in a statement.

The two projects with 3.7 billion dollar investment are vital for securing needed fuel supplies for local market and cutting imports.

The Medor lab expansion will up the lab's refining capacity by 60 percent to stand at 175,000 barrels per day, he said.]]>
9/26/2017 1:45:55 PM
<![CDATA[Settlements make two-state solution 'unattainable': UN official ]]>CAIRO – 26 September 2017: The United Nations (UN) Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Nikolay Mladenov said on Monday that “Israel's continued settlement expansion in the occupied Palestinian territory is making the two-state solution increasingly unattainable and undermines the Palestinian belief in international peace efforts," according to the Office of the UN special coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process website.

The special coordinator, referred to rhetoric speeches by Israeli figures including the Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who praised in August the achievements of his government in promoting settlement construction stating, “there will be no more uprooting of settlements in the land of Israel; we will deepen our roots, build, strengthen and settle.”

According to the report, other senior Israeli politicians made repeated calls for annexation of the West Bank, and one member of the Israeli Knesset expressed his desire to “destroy” hopes for Palestinian statehood, and stated that “there is room to define and realize the national aspirations of one people only -- the Jewish people.”

Mladenov delivered his message to the U.N. Security Council (UNSC) during the presentation of his third


on the implementation of the 2016 UNSC resolution No. 2334, which states that Israeli settlements in the oPt, including East Jerusalem, violate the international law.

Mladenov said that Israel did not “cease all settlement activities in the oPt, including East Jerusalem, and did not fully respect all of its legal obligations in this regards,” as called for by the resolution. He added that the settlement activity continued "at a high rate" and “a consistent pattern” over the reporting period, covering June through September.

“Activity during this period was concentrated primarily in occupied East Jerusalem, where plans were advanced for over 2,300 housing units in July, 30 percent more than for the whole of 2016,” said Mladenov in his briefing. He added that in early September construction resumed in a new settlement of “Amihai”, in the heart of the West Bank.

The Special Coordinator’s report also addressed deadly violence during this time, particularly related to unrest in Jerusalem's Old City, as well as the fragile situation in Gaza, among other concerns. He reported that 19 Palestinians and Eight Israelis were killed during the period June-September 2017. In addition, the Israeli forces conducted five airstrikes in Gaza resulting in three Palestinians being injured.

Mladenov referred to Egypt’s efforts in advancing the Palestinian unity and ending the split between Hamas and Fatah through hosting several talks between the two factions that led to the [the breakthrough decision by the de facto-Gaza leadership to dissolve the Administrative Committee and invite the Government to return to the Strip].

He also referred to reports from the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), showing that since January 2017, 344 Palestinian structures were demolished; third of them in East Jerusalem, displacing some 500 people. Mladenov added that in the occupied West Bank in August, three educational facilities, serving 175 children, were demolished or confiscated, citing the lack of building permits, which are virtually impossible for Palestinians to obtain, according to the special coordinator’s report. In addition, he reported that in July, 15 Israeli families illegally occupied a Palestinian house in Hebron, despite ongoing legal proceedings over its ownership.

In addition, he referred to a number of concerning passed laws and/or law amendments that further cement Israeli control over East Jerusalem including an amendment to the “Basic Law: Jerusalem the Capital of Israel” passed a first reading in the Knesset in July and a temporary injunction formally postponing application of the so-called “Regularization Law” by the High Court of Justice issued in August.

Also in August, a military order was issued establishing a “civil services administration” which further consolidates the Israeli presence in Hebron and reinforces the existing separation and division of this highly volatile area, where some 500 Israelis live among some 40,000 Palestinians.

Mladenov told the 15 members of the UNSC that "collective and determined action" by the parties, the region and the international community is needed to initiate a serious political process”. He added that there is a serious need to draw upon all relevant UN resolutions to help secure a peaceful future for Palestinians, Israelis and the entire region by ending the occupation and resolving all final status issues.

In December 2016, the UNSC passed a resolution that called on Israel to “immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the oPt, including East Jerusalem.” It also stated that the building of settlements by Israel has “no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation under international law and impediment to peace.” The resolution also states that the international community will not recognize any changes to the June 4, 1967 lines, including with regard to Jerusalem, other than those agreed to by the parties themselves through negotiations. Following this resolution, the Palestinian National Authority (PA) called on the International Criminal Court to investigate Israel’s settlement expansion in the West Bank.

Mladenov is a Bulgarian politician and diplomat born in 1972. He served as a minister of foreign affairs in Bulgaria, he also was a member of the European Parliament from 2007-2009. In addition, he served as the minister of defense from 2009-2010. In 2013, Mladenov was appointed as the UN secretary general’s special representative for Iraq and head of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq. In 2015, he was appointed as the UN special coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process.
9/26/2017 1:42:57 PM
<![CDATA[Egyptian life reflected in French graphic novel]]>
Golo spoke about his new graphic novel at the third edition of the CairoComix Festival - by Egypt Today Staff

The renowned cartoonist spoke in the seminar on the last day of the festival about his new comic book that will be published in October in France, about the adventures and the travels of his main character French-Romanian writer Panati Istrati; a second part of Golo’s book will be produced, and it will be about the struggles in Istrati’s life.

Golo was inspired by Istrati, who wrote novels that Golo felt reflected his inner status. Golo quotes the Romanian novelist; “When I had arrived to Egypt for the first time, I felt that I would live the most amazing story in my life.” In the seminar, he mentioned that he and Istrati have several similarities especially the feelings they hold towards Egypt.

Istrati was a Francophone Romanian working class writer who lived in the period between 1935 and 1948. He loved travelling and visiting many places all over the world including Egypt, France, Turkey and Syria.

Although he gave up on his education at the age of 13, he could teach himself French by reading prominent French writers and learning their famous quotes by heart to enable himself to master the language; until he was able to finish his first French book that became a huge success.

Due to the common traits between them, Golo was greatly affected by Istrati's life and decided to compose two albums in 2010 about him, one is about his adventures, to be published in October, and the other is about the struggles he had to face in his life; aiming to keep the memory of those writers who were not common, like Istrati, alive, Golo said.

Both Golo and Istrati came to Egypt following their friends’ advice, and after they had been impressed by their first visit, they both took it as a shelter to escape to in the winter.

Golo’s drawings in Istrati book - by Egypt Today Staff

Golo learned from Istrati’s love for cafes, where people regardless of their social status sit together exchanging ideas. “Gathering in these cafes helped express ideas through paintings conducted in newspapers long ago,” stated Golo.

Golo resembles Istrati’s novels to the stories of One Thousand and One Nights, because of Istrati’s talented storytelling.

To transfer the spirit of the past into this graphic novel correctly, Golo spent many hours in libraries to study the manner in which people used to dress, talk and live in the 1980s and 1990s, especially in the societies visited by Istrati, particularly Egypt. Therefore, he draws black and white sketches in this novel to suit the style of living in that era.

Drawing Istrati’s life, was a work that took four years to be completed. The sketches in his book were taken from famous carnivals and traditions organized in the 20th century in Romania and Europe, alongside with some sketches from films such as that of the boat drawn in the album inspired by scenes from Istrati’s favorite actor, Charlie Chaplin’s films.

Golo employs techniques as he drafts his work, which involves reading the events of any novel he wants to adapt, organizing those events in his brain, and improvising while drawing the pictures in his head with a paint brush.

“I do not draw chronologically according to the order of the events in a novel; however I draw according to what attracts me first. Yet the only difficulty I face is when I paint a picture different from what I had imagined,” Golo told Egypt Today.
9/26/2017 1:38:34 PM
<![CDATA[Boris Charmatz, the man who wants to make you dance]]>
Only weeks after getting 20,000 people to dance over 10 hours on the tarmac of Berlin's old Tempelhof airport, the French dancer and choreographer is about to repeat the trick at the vast 104 arts centre in Paris on Sunday.

While the American photographer Spencer Tunick persuades people to take off their clothes for mass nude shots, Charmatz has similarly inspired tens of thousands to shed their hang-ups about dancing.

Boris Charmatz is out to make the world dance.

He described his "Crazy for Dance" happening as not just a "mega bash" but a mass initiation into the joys and mysteries of modern dance classics, from Isadora Duncan to Lucinda Childs.

"It's about forming a dancing community," he said.

When you can attract 20,000 people to an old airport to dance "clearly you are responding to a need", he told AFP.

And 44-year-old Charmatz fills that need by taking his audiences by the hand through great contemporary pieces, some of his own work which can be danced by anyone, and joyous cult moves from the 1970s US television series "Soul Train".

Dancing in the shower -
"We go from a warm-up to a rehearsal with the public to create a piece, to a kind of living exhibition of dance with a whole forest of solos" by professional dancers which people can watch or try to copy themselves, he said.

At Berlin he had everything from traditional Greco-Turkish "zeybek" dances to the cutting edge Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker. In Paris on Sunday he will also take in hip-hop and Breton folk steps.

"The idea is that we share the culture of choreography," said Charmatz, who also heads a dance conservatory in the western French city of Rennes, which he has turned into what he calls the "Dancing Museum".

All of which has made him into one of the rising stars of dance, a huge irony for someone who comes out of the "non-dance" movement.

Non-dance was born in the mid-1990s by mixing dance with art and video, with one-off performances often in public spaces such as squares and railway stations.

"I like the idea that dance is something bigger than a show in a theatre, that it can also be something you can do on YouTube or in the shower," Charmatz added.

"They called us pseudo intellectuals," he recalled, "and said they neither wanted to do or see what my generation of artists like Xavier Le Roy and Jerome Bel were up to.

Shows 'must be free' -
"But we became extremely popular in museums," with Charmatz himself putting on performances in a string of major galleries, from MoMa in New York to Tate Modern in London as well as staging his acclaimed "20 Dancers for the XX Century" in the gilded corridors and stairwells of the Paris Opera rather than on its stage.
"MoMa and Tate Modern have been pioneers for the last 15 years of what a museum could be in the 21st century. Not only a museum of objects but also of thought, movement and performance," he said.
"But we became extremely popular in museums," with Charmatz himself putting on performances in a string of major galleries, from MoMa in New York to Tate Modern in London as well as staging his acclaimed "20 Dancers for the XX Century" in the gilded corridors and stairwells of the Paris Opera rather than on its stage.

"MoMa and Tate Modern have been pioneers for the last 15 years of what a museum could be in the 21st century. Not only a museum of objects but also of thought, movement and performance," he said.]]>
9/26/2017 1:31:05 PM
<![CDATA[Military production companies aim at 100% locally made products]]>
The ministry aims at encouraging citizens to trust the Egyptian industry, he said.

This came during the inauguration of the military production outlet in Helwan after renovating it internally and externally.

The ministry has a plan to renovate 22 outlets for selling civil products all over Egypt.

Assar asserted that refurbishing this outlet is part of a comprehensive renovation plan of the outlets within 2017.

This is the second outlet to be inaugurated after opening Heliopolis’ one in May.

Assar said a hotline number was allocated for after-sales service.]]>
9/26/2017 1:28:48 PM
<![CDATA[Dust off your shoulder pads; 'Dynasty' is back]]>
Nearly three decades after it went off the air, a sexier, younger-skewing and more diverse version is returning, as TV's penchant for mining former hits for new shows continues apace.

The primetime US soap opera starring Joan Collins, Linda Evans and John Forsythe, which was shown around the world, became the most widely watched series in television history over eight glorious years.

The CW's update, still focused on the trials and tribulations of the oil-rich Carrington clan, features Grant Show ("Melrose Place") in the role of Forsythe's suave, silk-tongued Blake Carrington.
The late US actor won two Golden Globes for his portrayal of the Carrington patriarch, ensuring that any future impersonator would have a daunting task fitting into those slip-on penny loafers.

"I always compare it to Roger Moore taking over from Sean Connery. Huge shoes to fill, but they are different actors completely," Show, 55, told AFP.
"He did his own thing and that's what I'm doing. I can't do what John Forsythe did so there are no ghosts there."

Blake was cast as the put-upon moral center of the 1981-1989 original series, hostage to the machinations of his malign ex-wife Alexis, played by Joan Collins.

However -- and this is a bit awkward -- he was also an incorrigible homophobe who told his son Steven his opinions weren't important because he was a "man who puts his hands on another man."

Times and mores have changed, of course, and Blake is no longer revolted, in the open at least, by his son's homosexuality while Steven (James Mackay) is very much out of the closet.

Real life dynasties -
"I feel like my Blake is more vulnerable. He's more concerned with how he fits in with his family, more concerned about Steven loving him back," said Show.

"John Forsythe's Blake wanted to dominate the family and mine cares more about it being a family unit. He doesn't want his son to hate him."

In an era of unprecedented interest in the private lives of real-life dynastic families such as the Trumps, the Clintons, the Murdochs and the Kardashians, the soap opera could hardly be more relevant.

The past, though, is another country and the creative team behind the show felt that several updates were necessary for the modern audience.

Linda Evans's blushing small-town bride Krystle is now a powerful, single-minded Venezuelan businesswoman named Cristal, played by Peruvian-Australian actress Nathalie Kelley ("UnReal").

The series has moved from Denver to multi-cultural Atlanta, where the rival Colby clan is now African American.

In the original series, Steven married scheming Sammy Jo despite being gay. Now, the character made famous by Heather Locklear is his male lover, a Latino played by Rafael de la Fuente.

"Atlanta is this incredibly diverse, modern city," said Josh Schwartz, the co-creator along with and Stephanie Savage, his producing partner on one of The CW's biggest soaps, "Gossip Girl."

"There are still pockets of that blue-blood, old money like Buckhead, where the Carringtons live, but we wanted the city to be reflecting the world and the company that Blake is trying to hold on to."

'Incestuous tree' -
The series is among a long list of 80s and 90s properties being given millennial makeovers that includes "Gilmore Girls," "Full House," "MacGyver," "Miami Vice," "Lethal Weapon," "Twin Peaks" "The X Files," "Starksy and Hutch" and "Hawaii Five-O."

"The 80s was the greatest decade ever and respect needs to be paid. We're just in that moment right now," Schwartz told AFP.

"And obviously there's a lot of choice for viewers, a lot of opportunities to watch things. I think having a title that people recognize... that's just something that helps cut through the noise."

Richard and Esther Shapiro, creators of the original show, were joined recently by the creative team and cast of the new "Dynasty" at a screening in the appropriately glam California city of Beverly Hills.

In one of the more surreal moments of the panel discussion, Esther, 89, revealed that her husband used to describe the show as "a family wrapped around an incestuous tree."

The opening episode delighted the PaleyFest Fall TV Previews audience, ending with a trademark over-the-top cat fight, featuring hair-pulling, cake-ruining and a couple of well-aimed slaps.

But there was no Alexis, prompting public and press alike to ponder if the iconic character was going to be consigned forever to the 1980s.

"You will see her. There are plans for that. But you're going to have to wait," Schwartz told AFP.

"Dynasty" premieres October 11 on The CW.]]>
9/26/2017 1:25:07 PM
<![CDATA[Israeli occupation forces imposes curfew on Beit Surik village in al Quds]]>
Mo'tasem al Munf, a member of Beit Surik municipality, said the Israeli occupants stormed the village and closed down its entrances, imposing a curfew on the whole village.

Meanwhile, the Israeli occupation troops stormed a clinic affiliated to the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) and ordered its closure.

The occupation forces also closed down the entrances of Beit Aqsa village in the neighborhood as part of their punitive measures against Palestinians following the morning attack.]]>
9/26/2017 1:21:52 PM
<![CDATA[Spain rejects Kurdistan independence referendum]]>
Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim el Jaafari met with his Spanish counterpart Alfonso Dastis on the sidelines of the 72nd round of UNGA in New York.

Dastis asserted his country’s support for Iraq and rejection of the independence referendum.

Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar el Abadi announced his rejection of the results of the referendum.]]>
9/26/2017 1:19:06 PM
<![CDATA[Prince Harry, Markle make first official outing at Invictus Games]]>
Wearing a black "Invictus Games" polo shirt and jeans, the British royal and American actress Markle -- also dressed down in jeans and a white shirt -- enjoyed the sun together as they watched the action on court.

Since the 36-year-old "Suits" actress told Vanity Fair the couple are "in love," fans and the press have been eagerly awaiting an official appearance -- with onlookers scrabbling to take pictures as they were escorted into Monday's event.

"We're two people who are really happy and in love," Markle told the magazine in an interview published early this month.

The couple both attended the opening ceremony of the third Invictus Games -- created by Prince Harry for disabled or wounded soldiers and veterans -- on Saturday.

Markle was pictured sitting a few rows behind the royal's seat next to US First Lady Melania Trump.

According to his schedule, Queen Elizabeth II's grandson will stay at Markle's Toronto home for all eight days of the Games.]]>
9/26/2017 1:16:59 PM
<![CDATA[Israel to solely bear consequences of occupation crimes against Palestinians]]>
In statements on Tuesday, Jaghoub said if Israel proceeds with its aggression against the Palestinians, more violence will take place.

Israel has to be well aware of the consequences of choosing the option of violence, destroying houses, killing Palestinians and storming into Aqsa Mosque.

He called on Israel to end the occupation of the Palestinian territories.]]>
9/26/2017 1:06:29 PM
<![CDATA[Kurdistan referendum will increase regional instability: US]]>
In a statement on Tuesday, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said that “The United States is deeply disappointed that the Kurdistan Regional Government decided to conduct today a unilateral referendum on independence, including areas outside the Iraqi Kurdistan Region”, US-based Radio Sawa reported.

The United States’ historic relationship with the people of the Iraqi Kurdistan Region will not change in light of today’s non-binding referendum, but we believe this step will increase instability and hardships for the Kurdistan region and its people, the statement read.

The referendum will greatly complicate the relationship of the Kurdish government with Iraq and its neighbors, the statement further said.

The fight against Daesh terrorist group is not over, and extremist groups are seeking to exploit instability and discord, the statement pointed out.

“We believe all sides should engage constructively in a dialogue to improve the future of all Iraqis. The US opposes violence and unilateral moves by any party to alter boundaries”, the statement noted.

The US supports a united, federal, democratic and prosperous Iraq and will continue to seek opportunities to assist Iraqis to fulfill their aspirations within the framework of the constitution, the statement added.]]>
9/26/2017 1:04:53 PM
<![CDATA[Kenyan police use tear gas, batons to disperse opposition protesters]]>
Several volleys of tear gas were fired at protestors near the election commission headquarters in central Nairobi, a Reuters witness said. When they regrouped, security officers fired more tear gas and beat some of them with batons.

Raila Odinga, who lost his bid to be elected president on Aug. 8 will get another chance when the vote is re-run after the Supreme Court annulled the re-election of President Uhuru Kenyatta, citing irregularities.

The court ruling on Sept. 1 said a repeat election should be held within 60 days, but Odinga has said he would not participate in the re-run scheduled for Oct. 26 if officials at the election board are not sacked and prosecuted.

Supporters of the opposition National Super Alliance coalition marched in several cities across the country on Tuesday.]]>
9/26/2017 1:02:19 PM
<![CDATA[EGPC plans oil, gas exploration auction in 2017]]>CAIRO – 26 September 2017: The Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) is preparing to hold a new auction for oil and gas exploration before the end of 2017, company chairman Abed Ezz El-Regal said in a statement.

The EGPC is waiting for the completion of technical procedures and the attainment of approvals from relevant entities to hold the auction, Ezz El-Regal said; adding that this comes within a plan to increase crude oil output.

Foreign firms have entered in 83 agreements for oil and gas exploration and production with the Ministry of Petroleum since the June 30 Revolution of 2013, Minister of Petroleum Tarek El-Molla said this week.

In August, Molla signed new three oil and gas exploration agreements in the Western Desert with a total value of $81.4 million in investments.

The agreements were signed between the EGPC, Royal Dutch Shell and Apex to drill 16 new wells using $23.2 million.
9/26/2017 1:00:21 PM
<![CDATA[Morata must prepare for hostile reception at Atletico: Courtois]]>
Chelsea's record signing Morata joined from Real in the close season and has made a flying start to life at Stamford Bridge. The striker hit his first hat-trick for the club as Chelsea beat Stoke 4-0 in the Premier League on Saturday.

Courtois, who spent three seasons on loan at Real's rivals Atletico, said his team mate at the other end of the pitch would have to prepare for a "big game" at the Estadio Metropolitano.

"He will get a different one from me. Alvaro played a lot of games against Atletico. I think he scored, I am not sure, so for him it will be a big game against his rivals," Courtois told the Chelsea website (www.chelseafc.com).

"For me it will be more friendly but between the 90 minutes we are playing there will be rivalry for me as well because they want their team to win.

"We know he is a top striker. We know he has this ability and we're very happy for him that he scored his hat-trick... a striker lives on goals and he has already scored a few important ones this season."

Courtois was looking forward to meet striker Diego Costa, who recently left Chelsea to rejoin Atletico after falling out with coach Antonio Conte.

Costa will be eligible to play for Atletico from Jan. 2 when the Spanish transfer window opens and the club's transfer ban ends. FIFA had banned the Madrid side for illegal transfer of minors.

"He is a very good friend and it will be nice to see him there. I am happy that until the New Year we don't have to face him and I hope we continue in the Champions League," the Belgian, 25, added.

Chelsea beat Qarabag 6-0 in their Champions League Group C opener while Atletico were held 0-0 at Roma.
9/26/2017 12:59:03 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt concerned over possible repercussions of Kurds referendum]]>
The statement said that “Egypt stressed the importance that all parties exercise restraint and not take any unilateral measures that might further complicate the situation, lead to destabilizing Iraq, and fuel atmosphere of chaos and tension in the region.” 

Egypt has also highlighted the importance of Iraqi people’s unity and cohesion in order to successfully combat terrorism and liberate Iraqi cities, which were formerly controlled by the Islamic State terrorist group.  

The statement also affirmed the “importance of pushing forward the constructive dialogue as the basis to reach a comprehensive and satisfactory settlement on the outstanding issues between Baghdad and Erbil.” 

It also added that Egypt adheres to the unity of Iraq and its territorial integrity. 
Egypt, as well as many other countries, has clearly rejected the referendum carried out by millions of Kurds in northern Iraq on Monday. 

International escalation against the referendum, which Kurdistan insists on conducting, has been witnessed over the past weeks, with neighboring countries warning of possible military interference and furthering boycotting measures if the referendum is held.]]>
9/26/2017 12:42:39 PM
<![CDATA[Kuwait totally supports maintaining Iraq's unity, stability: deputy FM]]>
Al Jarallah was speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a reception hosted by Saudi Embassy to celebrate the Kingdom's 87th national day that falls on September 23.

Commenting on the referendum on independence of Iraq's Kurdistan region held on Monday, he said: "We hope that the referendum would neither breach Iraq's constitution and unity, nor damage the relations between Baghdad and Irbil."

"We also hope that the polls will not hamper the tremendous efforts being made by Iraq to free its territories from the grip of terrorists," he noted.

Al Jarallah affirmed that countries inside the region and beyond are working together to de-escalate the tensions between Baghdad and Irbil in order to avoid any adverse impacts of the referendum.]]>
9/26/2017 12:28:41 PM
<![CDATA[‘Paula’ to screen at Balcon Heliopolis]]>
The drama directed by Christian Schwochow and written by Stefan Kolditz and Stephan Suschke was first released in Germany in 2016.

The heroes are Carla Juri (Paula Modersohn), Albrecht Schuch (Otto Modersohn), Roxane Duran (Clara Westhoff) and Joel Basman (Rainer Maria Rilke).

This movie focuses on the life of the German artist Paula Modersohn who lived in the 19th and 20th centuries, highlighting her most productive years in Worpswede, Germany, and Paris, besides her relationships with other artists and poets of her time. Her art mainly tackles the discrimination against women.

It won Bavarian Film Award in 2017and Film Award in Gold at German Film Awards in 2017. In addition, it was nominated for Jupiter Award in 2017 and Variety Piazza Grande Award at Locarno International Film Festival in 2016.
9/26/2017 12:25:42 PM
<![CDATA[Body of "fattest woman in world" arrives from Abu Dhabi]]>
Abdulati died on Monday in the UAE during her treatment trip. Her condition seriously deteriorated during her last 24 hours.

The UAE Burjeel hospital announced her death yesterday due to excessive obesity, including heart disease and kidney failure.]]>
9/26/2017 12:23:26 PM
<![CDATA[93% of voters support Kurdistan Independence:electoral commission]]>
Alsumaria news quoted the independent commission as saying that while vote counting was still running, initial results show that 93 percent of voters support independence, compared to 6.71 percent objecting.

Those are the results achieved after counting 282,000 ballots, according to the commission.

A representative of the commission said, however, that results can still change as the counting continues, with results slated for announcement on Thursday.

It said nearly 3.3 million voters, out of 5.2 eligibles, took part in the polls, putting turnout at an estimated 72.16 percent.

On Monday, Kurds headed to polling stations to attend the polls rejected by the Arab-led central government in Baghdad, the United Nations, the European Union, the United States and regional powers Turkey and Iran.]]>
9/26/2017 12:18:05 PM
<![CDATA[Pakistan's ex-PM Sharif stands trial before anti-corruption court]]>
His court appearance comes a day after he returned home from London, where he visited his wife who is being treated there, the ABC News reported.

Some Sharif followers started chanting slogans in his support inside the courtroom, annoying the judge, Mohammad Bashir, who then asked Pakistan's three-time premier to leave as his lawyers were there to represent him.

Sharif was disqualified on July 28 by the Supreme Court following a probe that determined he had concealed financial assets.

The corruption case had stemmed from documents leaked from a Panama law firm, which appeared to show that senior officials, including Sharif, had undisclosed assets.

Some independent analysts criticized the decision as it has been issued from one side upon the army's order that has been controlling Pakistan for a long time and still exerts influence.]]>
9/26/2017 12:16:22 PM
<![CDATA[Iraq refuses talks with Kurdistan about independence referendum results]]>
"We are not ready to discuss or have a dialogue about the results of the referendum because it is unconstitutional," Abadi said in a speech broadcast on state TV on Monday night.

Masoud Barzani's KRG says the referendum is not binding and was meant to be a legitimate mandate to negotiate with Baghdad and neighboring countries over the secession of the Kurdish-controlled region from Iraq.

The vote was expected to deliver a comfortable "yes", and final results should be announced in 72 hours.]]>
9/26/2017 12:13:34 PM
<![CDATA[Abu al-Gheit regrets Iraqi Kurdish referendum]]>
In his statement, Abu al-Gheit assured that it’s still possible “to contain and control the implications of this procedure [referendum], if all of the involved parties committed to wisdom and responsibility.”

The statement also referred to the resolution adopted by the League of Arab on September 12, regarding support the unity, sovereignty and independence of Iraq, along with the necessity of respecting its constitution.

Abu al-Gheit called all Arab parties within Iraq for a national comprehensive dialogue with national and Arabian guarantees in order to avoid any possible clash that might put Iraq’s stability and security at risk.

On Monday, Iraqi Kurds voted for an independence referendum, seeking more international pressure and support for their attempts to secede from Iraq, and despite not being internationally welcomed, Kurds were nevertheless determined on carrying out the referendum. ]]>
9/26/2017 12:10:23 PM
<![CDATA[METALS-London copper, zinc recover in line with oil]]>
"A generally stronger session overnight for the commodity complex. With no key economic data expected today, the focus is likely to remain on supply dynamics and geopolitical developments," ANZ said in a report.


* LME COPPER: London Metal Exchange copper rose 0.8 percent to $6,506 a tonne by 0715 GMT, having closed flat in the previous session. Prices fell to the lowest since mid-August at $6,366 a tonne on Friday.

* SHFE COPPER: Shanghai Futures Exchange copper rose 1 percent to 50,640 yuan ($7,645) a tonne.

* SHFE METALS: Shanghai zinc rallied 2.7 percent, helped by a recovery in Shanghai rebar, which climbed 1.3 percent.

* CHINA GROWTH: The Asian Development Bank raised its outlook for China's economic growth this year on the back of strong domestic consumption, an export recovery and solid growth in services.

* OIL: Oil markets took a breather on Tuesday after prices jumped more than 3 percent in the previous session, with Turkey threatening to cut crude flows from Iraq's Kurdistan region to the outside world.

* BAUXITE: Bauxite mining companies have resumed normal operations in Guinea's Boke region as local authorities try to negotiate a definitive end to unrest that has disrupted production for more than a week, sources familiar with the matter said on Monday.

* TC/RCS: Tighter copper supply and an increase in refining capacity in top-consumer China should result in lower treatment and refining charges (TC/RCs) by smelters, the chief executive of Chilean miner Antofagasta PLC told Reuters on Monday.

* MINING PERMITS: Brazil will reinstate a mining ban in a vast area of the Amazon rainforest, the government said on Monday, in an about-face that is a victory for environmentalists who feared deforestation.


* Asian shares withered on Tuesday and the yen firmed against the backdrop of rising tensions on the Korean Peninsula, and as investors awaited fresh signals about the U.S. monetary policy outlook.

COMING UP: U.S. New home sales Aug at 1400 GMT


0711 GMT

Three month LME copper 6505.5

Most active ShFE copper 50640

Three month LME aluminium 2148

Most active ShFE aluminium 16510

Three month LME zinc 3126.5

Most active ShFE zinc 25610

Three month LME lead 2501

Most active ShFE lead 20820

Three month LME nickel 10585

Most active ShFE nickel 84520

Three month LME tin 20735

Most active ShFE tin 147180





($1 = 6.6228 Chinese yuan)
9/26/2017 12:08:07 PM
<![CDATA[Four Israeli settlers injured in northern Jerusalem attack, attacker killed on spot]]>
According to an initial report by the occupation forces, a Palestinian young man approached the town's gate posing as a laborer then he opened fire on and stabbed a number of Israeli settlers in the town of Har Adar.

Four Israeli settlers received various injuries while the Palestinian man was reportedly neutralized and shot on spot.

Large numbers of Israeli occupation police, army and ambulances rushed to the accident scene.]]>
9/26/2017 12:01:00 PM
<![CDATA[27 medals for Pharaohs in modern pentathlon championship]]>
The tournament was attended by 500 players from 21 countries: Egypt, Spain, Georgia, South Africa, Russia, Kazakhstan, Czech Republic, Austria, Italy, Belarus, England, Germany, Portugal, India, Lithuania, Latvia, France, Ukraine, Russia, Greece and Ecuador.

It is worth mentioning that the Egyptian team participated in the tournament with 33 players from 8 to 21 years old. The team was accompanied by Eng. Hussein Gamal, treasurer of the mission; Adel Abdel Samia; Coach Ayman El Gammal; Coach Arafa Mahmoud for running; Coach Khalid Asfour for swimming; Coach Khalid Samir for shooting; Coach Tamer Murad for running; and Coach Haitham Sabri for fitness.
9/26/2017 12:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[Ghana's central bank keeps policy rate unchanged at 21 pct]]>9/26/2017 11:56:40 AM<![CDATA[Oil demand may exceed supply by up to 4 million bpd by 2019: Trafigura]]>
“When we count up the barrels across the next couple of years, we are coming up short,” said Ben Luckock, Trafigura’s co-head of group market risk, at an industry conference in Singapore.]]>
9/26/2017 11:51:56 AM
<![CDATA[Alstom, Siemens shares slip as rail deal looms]]>
Alstom shares initially rose but then surrendered those gains, with the stock down 0.1 percent in early session trading and Siemens falling a similar amount. Alstom shares had rallied strongly in earlier sessions on anticipation of a deal.

Siemens is expected to decide on Tuesday to pursue a transaction with Alstom rather than Canada’s Bombardier (BBDb.TO), two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Siemens and Alstom are strong in high-speed intercity trains with their ICE and TGV models. Siemens is also the leader in signaling technology, while Bombardier - whose transportation headquarters are in Berlin - is stronger in commuter and light-rail trains.

Major train and rail technology groups active in Europe have been looking at combining their businesses as larger Chinese state-backed rival CRRC (601766.SS) embarks on a global expansion drive.

A Franco-German deal between Siemens and Alstom would also have political ramifications, since the French government has a 20 percent stake in Alstom.

Several politicians and French trade union activists expressed concerns over France losing control of its TGV high-speed train – a symbol of national pride that has highlighted French engineering skill – and possible job losses.

“The problem is that at the end of the day, it would likely be a Siemens company, although we still need clarification on the capital structure,” said Prime Partners fund manager Francois Savary, whose firm holds some Siemens shares.

French right-wing politician Nicolas Dupont-Aignan criticized the likely deal on Tuesday as being more favorable for Germany rather than France, as did far-right politician Nicolas Bay, the National Front’s secretary general.

“The Franco-German partnership must not result in the eradication of French industry!” Bay said on Twitter.

Eric Woerth, of the right-wing Republicans’ party, voiced similar views on his Twitter account.

“Is this now the end of Alstom? Will TGV become German? Why does the government accept such an imbalance?”

A tie-up between the two companies - aimed at creating a European champion in the railway sector similar to Airbus (AIR.PA) in aviation - would represent a reconciliation of sorts between Siemens and Alstom.

Alstom snubbed the German company in 2014 to sell its energy division to General Electric (GE.N) in a deal that also saw Paris take a 20 percent stake in Alstom, under a temporary agreement with construction group Bouygues (BOUY.PA).

Siemens Mobility is expected to be merged into Alstom, in which Siemens would hold 50 percent plus one share, while the chief executive would be Alstom’s current boss Henri-Poupart Lafarge.

“We suggest that, if they participate, value creation would be limited for Siemens but material for Alstom,” said Exane BNP Paribas analysts, upgrading their rating on Alstom to “neutral” from “underweight”.]]>
9/26/2017 11:48:08 AM
<![CDATA[UPDATE 1-Afreximbank lead arranger for $1.8 billion Zimbabwe arrears loan -state paper]]>
Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa said last week the southern African nation had negotiated a cheaper loan to pay the arrears - a crucial step for it to regain access to global financing sources - but did not give details.

“Afreximbank (Africa Export and Import Bank) is the lead arranger to secure funding for the repayment of our arrears of $1.8 billion,” the newspaper quoted him as saying.

The bank has become the largest foreign lender to President Robert Mugabe’s government in the last four years.

Chinamasa was not immediately available for comment.

Zimbabwe was shut out of international debt markets after defaulting on foreign payments in 1999 and has a foreign debt of $7 billion, half the size of its economic output.

Afreximbank provided a $200 million guarantee for Zimbabwe’s surrogate “bond note” currency and will more than double that facility to $500 million this year, the central bank has said.

It also agreed last month to lend $600 million to help replenish Zimbabwe’s foreign bank accounts.]]>
9/26/2017 11:45:02 AM
<![CDATA[Gold steady near 1-wk high on North Korea worries]]>
Spot gold was nearly unchanged at $1,310.01 per ounce at 0636 GMT, after earlier marking its highest since Sept. 20 at $1,313.54. It gained over 1 percent in the previous session.

"The sharp sell-out in the equity market and rising risk aversion (are driving up gold prices)," said Richard Xu, a fund manager at China's biggest gold exchange-traded fund, HuaAn Gold.

North Korea's foreign minister said on Monday that a weekend tweet by President Donald Trump counted as a declaration of war on North Korea.

"Gold will continue to be headline-driven in the short term," said Jeffrey Halley, a senior market analyst with OANDA.

Gold is used as an alternative investment during times of political and financial uncertainty.

Asian shares withered and the yen firmed against the backdrop of rising tensions on the Korean Peninsula, and as investors awaited fresh signals about the U.S. monetary policy outlook.

Investors awaited a speech on "inflation, uncertainty, and monetary policy" by U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, in Cleveland at 1645 GMT.

On Monday, Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari said there was no need for the Fed to raise interest rates further as he sees no evidence recent weak inflation data is set to improve.

"Chinese real estate developers getting hit pretty badly (on Monday) because of the curbing of property sales and the downgrade of China's sovereign rating are also causing people to rethink their risky positions," said Xu at HuaAn Gold.

China and Hong Kong shares fell on Monday, led by property stocks after some cities imposed new housing controls to hose down an overheated market. They were also weighed down by Standard & Poor's downgrade of China's sovereign credit rating last week.

Spot gold may test support at $1,252 in three months, a break below which could trigger a further drop towards the next support level at $1,174, Reuters technical analyst Wang Tao said.

Meanwhile, silver was little changed at $17.18 per ounce. In the previous session, prices rose over 1 percent to register their biggest intra-day percentage gain since Sept. 7.

Platinum climbed 0.4 percent to $943.70 per ounce, after also registering its biggest one-day percentage gain since Sept. 7 in the previous session.

Palladium rose 0.8 percent to $917.90 per ounce.]]>
9/26/2017 11:42:39 AM
<![CDATA[Dubai airport passenger traffic up 6.6 pct in August, busiest month on record]]>
The number of passengers travelling through the airport increased 6.6 percent to 8.23 million compared to the same month a year ago, operator Dubai Airports said in a statement on Tuesday.

August is the third time this year the airport has seen record monthly passenger traffic, beating July’s 8.07 million and January’s 8.04 million.

The number of passengers per flight increased 7.2 percent to 246, however, flight movements - or landings and take-offs - declined for the fourth consecutive month.

Flight movements were down 1.7 percent to 34,370.

The most popular destinations by passenger volume were London, Kuwait, and Mumbai, and the airport handled 221,508 tonnes of cargo, which was 10.1 percent more than the same month a year earlier.

Dubai Airports’ statement did not mention the regional crisis, which has seen the United Arab Emirates and other Arab states ban flights to and from Qatar.]]>
9/26/2017 11:37:16 AM
<![CDATA[Kuwait wealth fund assets grew over 34 pct in 5 years-finmin]]>
Speaking at a Euromoney conference, Saleh described the state’s reserves and assets, managed by the KIA, as representing a “safety valve” for the economy during times of crisis as well as a nest egg that would provide for future generations.

“The growth in assets achieved by the (Kuwait Investment) Authority over the past five years is more than 34 percent,” he said. He did not disclose the size of the assets.

The Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute ranks KIA as the world’s fourth-biggest sovereign fund, managing $524 billion.

A KIA statement carried out by the country’s state news agency earlier this year implied the fund had assets of about $515 billion as of March 2016.

Among KIA’s high-profile investments, it owns 6.8 percent of German automaker Daimler AG and stakes in major Kuwait-based firms such as 18.4 percent of Kuwait Finance House , according to Thomson Reuters data. ]]>
9/26/2017 11:33:22 AM
<![CDATA[BHP, world's largest miner, says 2017 is 'tipping point' for electric cars]]>
“In September 2016 we published a blog and we set the question - could 2017 be the year of the electric vehicle revolution?” said Balhuizen, a company veteran who runs BHP’s commercial strategy, procurement and marketing from Singapore.

“The answer is yes...2017 is the revolution year we have been speaking about. And copper is the metal of the future.”

Europe has begun a dramatic shift away from the internal combustion engine, although, globally, there are only roughly 1 million electric cars out of a global fleet of closer to 1.1 billion.

Balhuizen said in the nearer term, over the next 10 to 15 years, improvements in the internal combustion engine will be a more significant drag on demand.


China’s efforts to build a new Silk Road are another major factor influencing commodities demand in the near term, and BHP estimates the impact on steel alone at 150 million tonnes of new demand, Balhuizen said, mostly to be used in structures and reinforced concrete. Spending could top $1.3 trillion.

China produced just over 800 million tonnes of steel in 2016.

There is little question Asia requires more spending on infrastructure - the Asian Development Bank estimates that Asia requires $26 trillion in infrastructure investment by 2030. Per year, that is more than double current spending, BHP said.

Belt and Road, as the giant initiative is known, is a “tremendous opportunity”, he said, acknowledging that there was a risk that big slogans may struggle to translate to profit.

Along with the rest of the commodities universe, BHP has benefited from rising prices over recent months - copper, for example is close to three-year highs, boosting cashflows.

The return of growth has not turned BHP away from its push for efficiencies, Balhuizen said, including with instruments like blockchain, although the focus remains on easier wins like e-documentation.

But efficiencies will not mean further reducing the portfolio of commodities for now, he said, brushing off criticism from some investors over BHP’s oil assets.

“The diversity of our portfolio does create value. We get better credit ratings, we get a lower cost of debt,” he said, pointing to applications in potash of techniques honed in oil.

“It is very tangible, very clear.”
BHP forecasts that could rise to 140 million vehicles by 2035, a forecast it says is on ‘the greener’ end.

“The reality is a mid-sized electric vehicle still needs subsidies to compete... so a lot will depend on batteries, on policy, on infrastructure,” Balhuizen said.

Electric cars are expected to soon cost the same as traditional vehicles - as early as next year by some estimates. But governments are also getting on board, with China’s subsidies leading the way and Britain becoming the latest country to announce its all-electric ambitions in July.

Balhuizen said he expected the electric vehicle boom would be felt - for producers - first in copper, where supply will struggle to match increased demand. The world’s top mines are aging and there have been no major discoveries in two decades.

The market, he said, may have underestimated the impact on the red metal: fully electric vehicles require four times as much copper as cars that run on combustion engines.

BHP, Balhuizen said, is well-placed, with assets like Escondida and Spence in Chile, and Olympic Dam in Australia. BHP said last month it was spending $2.5 billion to extend the life of the Spence mine in northern Chile by more than 50 years.

For oil, though, the impact of the electric car boom may take longer to be felt.

9/26/2017 11:28:08 AM
<![CDATA[MIDEAST STOCKS-Oil near $60 may support Gulf bourses]]>
Saudi Arabia’s stock market index fell 1.4 percent on Monday, diverging from Brent oil, amid rumours that index compiler FTSE might not upgrade Riyadh to emerging-market status as quickly as hoped.

At the end of the business day on Sept. 29, FTSE will announce its decision on whether to include Saudi Arabia in its secondary emerging market index - although capital inflows would not occur until the decision actually takes effect, probably in late 2018.

“Today, some investors may hunt for bargain stocks after most of the companies that were likely to make it into FTSE, saw their prices drop between 1-2 percent,” said a Riyadh-based equity portfolio manager.

Brent oil surged 3.8 percent overnight to settle at $59.02 a barrel after major producers said the global market was on its way to rebalancing, and the commodity continued to climb early on Tuesday.

This may bode well for other markets in the region, but gains may be capped by rising tensions in the Korean Peninsula. North Korea’s foreign minister said on Monday that a weekend tweet by U.S. President Donald Trump counted as a declaration of war on North Korea and that Pyongyang reserved the right to take countermeasures, including shooting down U.S. bombers even if they are not in its air space.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was last down 0.7 percent. ]]>
9/26/2017 11:25:01 AM
<![CDATA[Euro hits one-month low after worst day of 2017]]>
German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who won a fourth term in elections on Sunday but now faces a tough juggling act to form a government with other parties, on Monday struck a note of caution with respect to French calls for fiscal union.

French President Emmanuel Macron, who wants a fundamental overhaul of the European Union’s single currency zone and whose ideas include creating a euro zone budget and a euro zone finance minister, will lay out his plans in a speech in Paris on Tuesday.

But the results of Germany’s election have forced Merkel to consider a new coalition including the liberal Free Democrats (FDP), a party critical of Macron’s ideas on Europe, and investors are therefore worried the reforms that they would welcome will not end up going through.

The euro slipped as low as $1.1811 EUR= in morning trade in London, its weakest since Aug. 25, after falling around 0.9 percent on Monday - its heaviest one-day loss since December.

Commerzbank currency strategist Thu Lan Nguyen, in Frankfurt, said hopes for greater euro zone integration had been the main cause of a more than 10 percent appreciation by the euro against the dollar since the first round of France’s presidential election.

“The euro has been appreciating since the French elections because of the push by Macron for fiscal union,” she said. “There is some uncertainty (over that) in the market now against the background of the German elections.”

The euro faced additional pressure on Monday after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi singled out currency volatility as a source of uncertainty that required monitoring and argued that “ample” ECB accommodation was still needed, because a premature and hasty move could unravel its work.

The euro had risen to a 2-1/2-year high of $1.2092 soon after the ECB’s Sept. 7 policy meeting, with euro bulls buoyed by the central bank’s signal of an eventual end to its large bond-buying scheme, while the dollar’s weakness has also helped.


The dollar was flat at 111.73 yen JPY=, having earlier dipped against the Japanese currency as worries over North Korea flared up again amid an escalating war of words between it and the United States.

The yen made sharp gains versus the greenback on Monday after the North Korean foreign minister said President Donald Trump had declared war on the country and that Pyongyang reserved the right to take countermeasures, including shooting down U.S. bombers even if not in its air space.

“The dollar tends to fall on flare-ups in North Korean-related matters, but whether the Federal Reserve can hike interest rates in December as they projected still remains the ultimate decider (of dollar direction),” said Shin Kadota, senior strategist at Barclays in Tokyo.

The dollar index, which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies but is heavily skewed towards the euro, hit its highest in four weeks .DXY.

Immediate focus was on what views might be expressed by Fed Chair Janet Yellen, who is due to speak in Cleveland at 1645 GMT on “inflation, uncertainty, and monetary policy.”

New Zealand's dollar extended the previous day's slide and was down 0.6 percent at $0.7223 NZD=D4, having sunk after New Zealand's National Party won the largest number of votes in Saturday's election but not enough seats to govern outright. ]]>
9/26/2017 11:22:40 AM
<![CDATA[MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf rises in early trade as crude oil scales two-year highs]]>
Brent oil surged 3.8 percent overnight to settle at $59.02 a barrel after major producers said the global market was on its way to rebalancing, and the commodity traded near that level on Tuesday morning.

Riyadh’s index rose 0.5 percent as all 13 petrochemical shares that were trading on Tuesday morning rose, including bellwether Saudi Basic Industries which was up 1.0 percent.

The main stock index had dropped 1.4 percent on Monday, diverging from Brent oil, amid rumours that index compiler FTSE might not upgrade Riyadh to emerging-market status on Sept. 29.

Other stocks which had been hit on Monday were also up, including dairy maker Almarai, which rebounded 0.6 percent.

Qatar’s stock index was up 0.6 percent, heading for its sixth consecutive session of gains. Commodity linked shares were some of the top performers, with oil and drilling service provider Gulf International Services added 3.5 percent.

The Dubai index was up 0.3 percent as 12 shares rose and 10 others declined.

In Abu Dhabi, Dana Gas rose 1.4 percent, recovering slightly from its steep declines, as a London court hearing resumed on Monday on its maturing sukuk issue.

The main index was flat.]]>
9/26/2017 11:15:17 AM
<![CDATA[et Quote: Serena Williams ]]>
The Tennis player was born on September 26, 1981. She was the youngest of the five daughters.

She became a professional tennis player in 1995. She started from rank 304, but she made her way up to the top 100.

She became a legacy in the year 1988 with her sister, when they won the championship of the doubles. She defeated Maria Sharapova and Victoria Azarenka to record a victory at the French Open and the U.S. Open singles tournament, in 2013, becoming the oldest U.S. Open Champion.

Fun Facts:

● Her middle name is Jameka.

● Her favorite city in the world is Rome.

● Her second favorite sport is gymnastics.

● She has competed at three Olympics and won four gold medals.

Another Quote for the road:

“I just never give up. I fight to the end. You can’t go out and say, ‘I want a bag of never-say-die spirit.’ It’s not for sale. It has to be innate.”
9/26/2017 11:07:12 AM
<![CDATA[El Gouna Film Festival – ‘Soufra’]]>
Set in Burj el-Barajneh refugee camp in Lebanon, “Soufra” follows an old woman named Mariam Shaar who decides to create a catering company named "Soufra," after the Arabic word for feast. Life in the camp is poor and dismal, and women are typically employed as cleaners or factory workers.

Shaar takes it upon herself to bring a ray of hope to the camp she has known as home her entire life, and unites the camp’s women with backgrounds from all across the Arab world to help establish the company. Her ultimate goal is to create a Soufra food truck, and use the funds to build a children’s center.

“Soufra” will premiere at El Gouna Film Festival.
9/26/2017 10:54:30 AM
<![CDATA[Egypt Support Coalition runs elections for top post in Oct.]]>
The coalition comprises 317 parliament members; of which 216 are independent, and 101 are affiliated with seven parties that are Homat El Watan, Misr Balady, Mostaqbal Watan, El Moatamar, El Shaab El Gomhoury, El Horeya, and Misr El Haditha. The coalition was founded in 2015 following the parliamentary elections.

The coalition’s current leader is businessman Mohamed El Seweidy, and he is running for a second term which would last for three more years.

9/26/2017 10:52:14 AM
<![CDATA[El-Gouna Film Festival – ‘Rue De La Victoire’]]>
Mohamed Dhiaa Gharbi, hailing from Tunisia, has spent his life training to be a circus performer, practicing acrobats with car tires and all other manner of junk, a testament to his dedication. His hard work eventually pays off as Mohamed finds eventually find himself in France’s Cirque Farouche.

The film follows Gharbi's life as he trains hard and works to fulfill his dreams, making a name for himself amongst the colorful characters of the circus. It is a story of identity, of the paths chosen in life and the work it takes to get there.

Rue De La Victoire premiered in Canada on July 14.

9/26/2017 10:26:59 AM
<![CDATA[China state-owned firms' profits up 21.7 percent in January-August]]>
Total profits stood at 1.9 trillion yuan ($287.27 billion) in January-August, while revenue rose 15.5 percent to 33.08 trillion yuan.

State firms’ liabilities rose 11 percent from a year earlier to 96.49 trillion yuan at the end of August, the ministry said.]]>
9/26/2017 10:20:35 AM
<![CDATA[North Korea risks support yen, euro struggles near 4-week lows vs dollar]]>
The dollar was 0.15 percent lower at 111.550 yen JPY= after coming off a high of 112.530 the previous day.

The euro was steady at 132.340 yen EURJPY= after dropping more than 1 percent overnight.

The Japanese currency made sharp gains after North Korea’s foreign minister Ri Yong Ho said on Monday that President Donald Trump had declared war on the country and that Pyongyang reserved the right to take countermeasures, including shooting down U.S. bombers even if they are not in its air space.

Japan is the world’s largest creditor nation and traders tend to assume Japanese investors would repatriate funds at times of crisis, thus pushing up the yen. Many wonder, however, if Japanese assets would really remain in favour if an actual war broke out in Asia.

The Swiss franc, also sought in times of geopolitical tensions, stood at 0.9662 franc per dollar CHF= after gaining about 0.3 percent overnight.

“The dollar tends to fall on flare ups in North Korean-related matters, but whether the Federal Reserve can hike interest rates in December as they projected still remains the ultimate decider,” said Shin Kadota, senior strategist at Barclays in Tokyo.

Immediate focus was on what views could be expressed by Fed Chair Janet Yellen, who is due to speak in Cleveland at 1645 GMT on “inflation, uncertainty, and monetary policy.”

The euro was 0.1 percent higher at $1.1857 EUR= but in close reach of $1.1832, its lowest level since Aug. 31 plumbed the previous day when it sank nearly 1 percent.

The common currency took a knock after German Chancellor Angela Merkel won her country’s elections over the weekend but saw a chunk of support shift to the far right.

The euro faced additional pressure after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi singled out currency volatility as a source of uncertainty that required monitoring and argued that “ample” ECB accommodation was still needed, because a premature and hasty move could unravel its work.

The euro had risen to a 2-1/2-year high of $1.2092 soon after the ECB’s Sept. 7 policy meeting. Euro bulls were buoyed by the central bank’s signal of an eventual end to its large bond-buying scheme, while the dollar’s weakness has also helped.

At the same time the 10-year German bund yield DE10YT=TWEB hit a two-month low as the debt markets interpreted the ECB’s message differently, seeing the central bank taking a cautious and patient approach to tapering its stimulus.

But the divergence between the euro and German yields that occurred has narrowed since.

“It was hard to see the euro and yields continuing to move in different directions, which was only possible as some speculators appeared to have gone to great lengths to push the euro higher,” said Masashi Murata, senior currency strategist at Brown Brothers Harriman in Tokyo.

“But these euro long positions are beginning to become untenable as the dollar is stronger and U.S. yields are higher after the Fed’s policy meeting this month.”

The New Zealand dollar extended the previous day's slide and was last down 0.2 percent at $0.7249 NZD=D4.

The kiwi sank 1 percent overnight after New Zealand Prime Minister Bill English’s National Party won the largest number of votes in Saturday’s election but not enough seats to rule outright, leaving investors likely facing weeks of political horse-trading before a government is formed.

The dollar index against a basket of six major currencies was a shade lower at 92.573 .DXY after rising 0.5 percent the previous day to a three-week high of 92.724.]]>
9/26/2017 10:17:14 AM
<![CDATA[Alibaba takes control of logistics business, pledges $15 billion to expand network]]>
Alibaba is investing 5.3 billion yuan in Cainiao Smart Logistics Network to boost its stake to 51 percent from 47 percent. The investment would value Cainiao, a joint venture of top Chinese logistics firms, at around $20 billion.“Our commitment to Cainiao and additional investment in logistics demonstrate Alibaba’s commitment to building the most-efficient logistic network in China and around the world,” Alibaba CEO Daniel Zhang said in a statement on Tuesday.

The announcement comes as Alibaba is rapidly expanding its e-commerce and logistics network abroad, including newly announced direct sales channels in Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines, facilitated by a $2 billion investment in Southeast Asian online retailer Lazada Group.

Alibaba’s latest investment in Cainiao also signals its intention to boost control over the domestic warehousing and delivery market, which has become increasingly competitive as firms seek to capitalize on logistics data assets.

In June top logistics firm SF Holding Co cut ties with the Cainiao coalition, which provides logistics support directly to Alibaba’s top e-commerce platform Taobao, claiming Alibaba had requested data unrelated to the existing partnership agreement. Alibaba denied the claims.

Alibaba said on Tuesday the $15 billion investment will be used to develop its data technology and improve its warehousing and delivery development.

Alibaba subscribed to new shares of Cainiao to boost its stake to a majority, according to a person close to the e-commerce firm. Alibaba will gain a new board seat in Cainiao, and will represent four out of a total seven seats.

Despite attracting billions of dollars from equity investors, Chinese logistic firms haven’t fared well in recent public listings.

Shares of ZTO Express Inc, which raised $1.4 billion from its New York IPO last October in the largest U.S. offering by any Chinese company since Alibaba in 2014, are down 22 percent from the listing price.

And Best Inc, a Chinese delivery firm backed by Alibaba, raised $450 million in a U.S. IPO last week, nearly half of what it had initially intended to raise.

Cainiao is not currently considering any IPO, the person said.

Alibaba did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Alibaba co-founded Cainiao in 2013, with partners including department store owner Intime Group, conglomerate Fosun Group and a few logistics companies. It oversees roughly 57 million deliveries a day.]]>
9/26/2017 10:13:59 AM
<![CDATA[China's fuel exports to North Korea slow further: customs]]>
The release comes after data on Saturday showed China’s trade with North Korea jumped in August even after the U.N. sanctions, mainly driven by a rise in imports.

The data also showed China imported 1.6 million tonnes of coal from North Korea, the first since February when Beijing banned purchases of the fuel from its northern neighbor.

It was not immediately clear why the data showed shipments had resumed. A customs official said she would investigate the matter.

Last month, the U.N. Security council unanimously imposed new sanctions on North Korea targeting its exports of coal, iron ore, lead, lead ore and seafood. The sanctions took effect this month, but China enforced the new measures from Aug. 15.

China’s diesel exports to North Korea were 170 tonnes, compared with zero tonnes in August last year and gasoline shipments were 180 tonnes, down 96.3 percent from a year ago.]]>
9/26/2017 10:10:28 AM
<![CDATA[U.S. dollar steady for second week in row]]>
The exchange rate of the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) for the U.S. dollar recorded LE 17.617 for buying and LE 17.717 for selling, which is the same rate of the latest banking transactions.

Going down, the euro exchange rate recorded LE 20.91 for buying and LE 21.04, compared to LE 21.05 for buying and LE 21.18 for selling in the prior day.

Meanwhile, the GBP (British Pound) slightly went up to LE 23.81 for buying and LE 23.86 for selling, compared to LE 23.76 for buying and LE 23.90 for selling in the latest banking transactions.

As for the Arab currencies, the Saudi Riyal stabilized at LE 4.697 for buying and LE 4.724 for selling, according to the CBE.

The Kuwaiti dinar recorded LE 58.35 for buying and LE 58.80 for selling and the Emirati Dirham registered LE 4.79 for selling and LE 4.823 for buying. ]]>
9/26/2017 10:06:54 AM
<![CDATA[Asian shares wilt, yen firms as Korean tensions rise]]>
Futures suggested a subdued start to the European trading day, with the Eurostoxx 50 and FTSE futures both down 0.1 percent and DAX futures down 0.2 percent

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down 0.6 percent, following tech-focused losses on Wall Street.

The risk-averse mood increased the appeal of safe-haven government debt, with the yield on benchmark 10-year Treasury notes edging down to 2.218 percent from its U.S. close on Monday of 2.220 percent.

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen is scheduled to speak later on Tuesday (1645 GMT) on “Prospects for Growth: Reassessing the Fundamentals”.

Investors will be parsing her words for clues on whether the U.S. central bank will stick to its plan to raise interest rates in December.

“If the U.S. is going to increase its policy rate as soon as December, that is going to support the dollar, but the situation is complicated by the North Korean tensions,” said Harumi Taguchi, principal economist at IHS Markit in Tokyo.

“Even if Yellen says something positive for the markets, it might just be offset by the geopolitical risks,” she said.

North Korea’s foreign minister said on Monday that a weekend tweet by President Donald Trump counted as a declaration of war on North Korea and that Pyongyang reserved the right to take countermeasures, including shooting down U.S. bombers even if they are not in its air space.

North Korea has been moving airplanes and boosting defenses on its east coast after the United States dispatched B-1B bombers to the Korean peninsula over the weekend, South Korea’s Yonhap News Agency reported on Tuesday, citing the country’s spy agency.

Australian shares were down 0.2 percent, while South Korean shares slid 0.3 percent.

Japan’s Nikkei stock index finished 0.3 percent lower, pressured by a stronger yen.

“In addition to North Korea, the stronger yen is affecting shares today, and there’s also Apple’s poor performance, after the report that it told suppliers to reduce parts shipments,” said Norihiro Fujito, senior investment strategist at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities.

Apple Inc shed 0.9 percent on Monday after it was reported the company had told suppliers to scale back shipments of parts for its upcoming iPhone X.

The dollar dropped 0.1 percent against the yen to 111.61, well shy of last week’s two-month high of 112.725.

The yen tends to benefit during times of risk aversion due to Japan’s net creditor status and the expectation that Japanese investors would repatriate assets when facing a crisis.

The euro steadied after tumbling on Monday following a severely diminished election victory for German Chancellor Angela Merkel that was accompanied by a surge in support for the far right. Support for Merkel’s conservatives unexpectedly slumped to its lowest since 1949 and the Social Democrats, partners in the outgoing coalition, said they would go into opposition.

The single currency was flat on the day at $1.1848, while the dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six major rivals, was down slightly at 92.634.

On Monday, New York Fed President William Dudley said the U.S. central bank is on track to gradually raise rates given factors depressing inflation are “fading” and the U.S. economy’s fundamentals are sound.

But Chicago Fed President Charles Evans said the Fed should wait until there are clear signs of faster wage and price growth before hiking rates again.

Crude oil prices took a breather after soaring more than 3 percent on Monday, as major producers said the global market was on its way to rebalancing while Turkey threatened to cut oil flows from Iraq’s Kurdistan region to its ports.

U.S. crude dipped 0.2 percent to $52.14 a barrel, after touching its highest levels since April. Brent crude rose slightly to $59.04, after scaling its highest peak since July 2015.

Gold was slightly higher after the heightened Korean tensions helped push it up more than 1 percent overnight. Spot gold added 0.1 percent to $1,311.10 per ounce.]]>
9/26/2017 9:54:49 AM
<![CDATA[Oil rises to 26-month high; Turkey threatens to cut Kurdistan oil pipeline]]>
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan threatened on Monday to cut off the pipeline that carries oil exports from northern Iraq, intensifying pressure on the Kurdish autonomous region over its independence referendum.

The pipeline to Turkey’s port of Ceyhan usually pumps between 500,000 and 600,000 barrels per day (bpd). The loss of this supply combined with the 1.8 million bpd of supply cuts by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and non-OPEC producers has raised concerns of tighter supply.

The Iraqi government said it will not hold talks with the Kurdistan Regional Government about the results of the referendum, which is expected to show a comfortable majority in favor of independence after the results are announced in about 72 hours.

“The high compliance of producers in jointly curbing output as well as the news of (Turkey’s response to) the referendum helped oil prices,” said Tomomichi Akuta, senior economist at Mitsubishi UFJ Research and Consulting in Tokyo.

London Brent crude for November delivery LCOc1 was up 1 cent at $59.03 a barrel by 0621 GMT after settling up 3.8 percent on Monday. Earlier it rose to $59.49, the highest since July 10, 2015.

U.S. crude for November delivery CLc1 was down 10 cents at $52.12, after hitting $52.43, a five-month high.

Brent has jumped from just over $55 a barrel a week ago, as OPEC and non-OPEC producers confirmed the market was well on its way toward rebalancing, while oil inventories declined.

However, other analysts were cautious of further price gains because of higher oil output from the United States. The U.S. Energy Information Administration said that production from wells in shale formations will rise for a 10th month in a row in October.

“With oil this high, shale oil output will accelerate, capping oil prices,” said a Tokyo-based oil analyst who declined to be identified.

U.S. crude prices have lagged behind Brent’s gains amid a large oversupply exacerbated by Hurricane Harvey, which forced the closure of nearly 25 percent of U.S. refining capacity.

The spread between WTI and Brent futures CL-LCO1=R widened to $7.17, its steepest since August 2015.

U.S. crude inventories likely rose by 2.3 million barrels last week, a preliminary Reuters poll showed ahead of data by American Petroleum Institute (API).

Gasoline stockpiles likely fell by 1 million barrels, while distillate inventories, which include heating oil and diesel fuel, were forecast to fall by 2.5 million barrels.

The API is scheduled to release its weekly data at 4:30 p.m. EDT (2030 GMT).]]>
9/26/2017 9:51:51 AM
<![CDATA[China's iQiyi considers U.S. listing as early as 2018: source]]>
The video steaming service, which competes with Tencent Holdings Ltd (0700.HK) and Alibaba Holdings Ltd’s (BABA.N) Youku Tudou, is set to start negotiations with banks and deal arrangers, Bloomberg said.

The up to $10 billion valuation would still be a fraction of U.S. rival Netflix’s near $80 billion market capitalization. iQiyi had 481 million monthly active users as of the end of last year, data cited by Baidu shows.

Baidu and iQiyi representatives declined to comment when contacted by Reuters on Tuesday. The source declined to be identified because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

The video steaming service that hosts free and subscription services said in February it had raised $1.53 billion in new funds to compete with rivals in the country’s hotly contested online entertainment sector.

That investment round included funds from Baidu, Hillhouse Capital, IDG Capital and Sequoia Capital.

China’s online market for paid-for content has grown fast as the country cracks down on once rampant piracy, but has required huge amounts of investment from firms as they look to lure in viewers with premium shows from drama to sport.]]>
9/26/2017 9:49:29 AM
<![CDATA[A Tour in Cairo Comix's "Sendas" [Paths/Masarat] Exhibition]]>
The next stop was at Sendas or Paths exhibition [Masarat] at Future Hall. It is an exhibition to express the progress of Spanish graphic stories.

The works and the biography for ten Spanish artists and painters were displayed through the days of the festival.

Ten leading artists highlight the history of the Spanish methodology in Graphic stories. The featured artists were: Paco Roca, Miguelanxo Prado, Juan Díaz Canales, Alfonso Zapico, Javi Rey, José Luis Munuera, Emma Ríos, Xulia Vicente y Manuel Gutiérrez, Francisco Ruizge y Cristina Florido and Alberto Madrigal.

By Egypt today staff

By Egypt today staff

It was the first exhibition for Spanish graphic story. The exhibited was opened in the attendance of the Spanish artist Alphonso Zapico. It was organized by Fanar Foundation.

Each artist has its own mark in her/his works. The style of the displayed works were various, there are black and white painting, all in red paintings, sociopolitical criticism, and social emotional situations.

By Egypt today staff

By Egypt today staff

Each exhibited work reflects a certain progress in the road of Spanish graphic story.

Manuel Gutierrez and Xulia Vicente cooperated together to combine a classic Anime sign which is the dragon in the frame of Spanish adventures.

They produced a number of adventure graphic stories which carry the elements of attraction while its complexity.

Their stories characterized by detailed drawings and impressive usage of different colors.

Jose Luis Munuera is an iconic Spanish painter who supported his presence in the French scene.

He produced more than 20 graphic story albums. He follows the classic Belgian graphic story school.

A magical life of the pirates, with its minor characters, conflicts, wars, dramatic techniques are presented in his works.

By Egypt today staff

By Egypt today staff

His works are characterized by the usage of warm colors as Red and Orange.

Javi Rey started his career in France too. His paintings carry severe caring of details.

His exhibited work discusses the hard conditions in the Spanish countryside as poverty, that is why he used very cold gloomy colors as dark Blue and gray.

Emma Rios is a painter and she studied engineering. Her works talk about the human and science. Her leading work discussed how human becomes a prisoner for science.

She used different degrees of red to reflect the dangerous of these demons.

Juan Diaz Canales is one of the leading Spanish artists. He reflects a number of serious economic and social issues for example the suffering of retired men.

The events of his stories took place in remarkable known places in addition to fictional unknown locations. He focused on black and white colors.

Alberto Madrigal belonged to the lost generation due to the hard economic crisis in Spain.

He depends on pale images and colors with focusing on the details of the location.

By Egypt today staff

By Egypt today staff

His characters expressions are simple and give the reader space to add his/her interpretations.

Finally, Cristina Florida and Francisco Ruizge cooperated on project to reflect many love stories.

Their works focused on narrating consecutive events using squares.

Using gray as drawing by a pencil style is another main characteristic in their works.

Generally, the hall was somehow calm, where visitors could easily browse the artwork in peace.

By Egypt today staff

By Egypt today staff

By Egypt today staff

The organization of the exhibition was very good and the brief biographies about the artists were useful.

The work was displayed in an attractive and an organized way.

It is great that Egyptian audience had the chance to see something unique and impressive.

Cairo Comix is an artistic celebration that aims to gather Egyptians ranging between local and international comic book artists; the festival seeks to provide for the first time numerous prizes such as Best Published Graphic Novel in Arabic, according to the festival’s Facebook page.

Featuring talks, workshops, comic book sales and exhibitions, the festival shed light on trending art projects through bringing together artists, competitors, experts and fans in the same place.

Cairo Comix Festival is about the evolution of the independent art movement in Egypt and more broadly the Middle East and North Africa region.

By Egypt today staff

By Egypt today staff

By Egypt today staff

By Egypt today staff

By Egypt today staff

By Egypt today staff

By Egypt today staff

It held a competition among the participants in different categories including Best Printed Graphic Novel, Best Graphic Short Story published in a book, magazine, or newspaper, and Best Stripped Bar published in magazine or newspaper.

Other categories were provided such as, Best Printed Magazine, Best Electronic Post that was never printed, and Best Project Under Establishment.

Famous guests attended the festival such as writer and painter, Mohamed Salah from Egypt, and painter and story writer, Alfonso Zapico from Spain. ]]>
9/26/2017 9:46:09 AM
<![CDATA[Barry writes a new page in Premier League's history ]]>
Barry, 36, surpassed Manchester United’s legend, Ryan Giggs, who featured in 632 games in the Premier League.

Barry’s journey in the Premier League started many years ago. He played his first game in the Premier League with Aston Villa in 1998.

Gareth Barry captained Aston Villa, Liverpoolecho.co

Aston Villa is considered the club of Barry’s life, as he played for the club for 12 years, playing 365 games and scoring 41 goals for the club.

Barry moved from Aston Villa in 2009 to join the blue side of Manchester, Manchester City, representing the club for four years.

Barry played 132 games with Manchester City, scoring six goals. He touched the glory with Manchester City when he won the Premier League title with the club in 2012.

Gareth Barry with Man City, Reuters

Barry, the voyager, moved from Manchester to Liverpool City, where he played four years for Everton, representing the club in 131 games and scoring five goals.

Gareth Barry played for Everton, Reuters

Barry’s last station was in West Midlands with West Bromwich Albion. He joined the club this summer, playing five games with the club, and his last one against Arsenal was his date with history.

Barry had a long journey with the Premier League, playing games more than any one, and he still has a lot to show the football fans.
9/26/2017 9:32:36 AM
<![CDATA[Egyptian Futsal team falls in deadly time in front of Bahrain ]]>
Bahraini team opened the scoring with a goal through Ali Saleh, and then the Egyptian team tied through Mustafa Eid, and provided the Pharaohs for a second goal through Ibrahim Eica, equivalent for Bahrain scored by Salman Al-Mulla to end the first half with a positive draw 2-2 between the two teams.

The second half saw Bahrain scored a third goal through Jassam Saleh, and then Egypt drew through Ahmed Homs and in the last seconds Bahrain scored a deadly goal through Saleh to end the match with a 3-4 victory for Bahrain.

The coaching team of the Futsal team led by Hisham Saleh, the head coach, is looking for the best way to reach the optimal configuration before the finals of the African Nations under the plan of the device to build a new team.
9/26/2017 9:26:27 AM
<![CDATA[Neny's Arsenal defeats Hegazi's West Brom]]>
Arsenal started the game well, trying to score the first goal to have the upper hand in the game, and that is what Arsenal striker Alexandre Lacazette did when he scored the first for Arsenal in the 20th minute to end the first half 1-0 for Arsenal.

West Bromwich tried to equalize the score in the second half, but Arsenal’s defense prevented them from scoring.

In the 67th minute, Arsenal got a penalty, from which Lacazette managed to double the score for Arsenal. The penalty came after a tackle against Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey.

Arsenal gained three points to reach seventh place with 10 points, while West Bromwich stayed with 8 points in 12th place.

Neny and Ahmed Hegazi played the whole game. Hegazi got a rating of 7.1, while Neny got a rating of 6.7, according to whoscored.com
9/26/2017 9:24:56 AM
<![CDATA[Carvajal never doubts Ronaldo’s abilities ]]>
“No one doubts him. Every training session is a spectacle, and if he keeps getting chances, he will score, because he always does," Carvajal told press ahead of Real Madrid’s clash against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League on Saturday.

Ronaldo failed to score any goal in two matches in the Spanish League. He did not participate in the first four games in the league, as he was banned due to offensive behavior against the referee in the Spanish Super Cup first leg against Barcelona.

Carvajal also spoke about his competitor in his position, the Moroccan Achraf Hakimi. He said, “Achraf is a fantastic guy; he is learning fast and he will have the opportunities this season to improve.”

Asked about the effect of the competition with Hakimi on him, Carvajal said, “I do not need to feel competition to improve; the best competition for me is myself."

Real Madrid prepares to face Borussia Dortmund at the UEFA Champions League. They won their first game in the group 3-0 over Apoel Nicosia from Cyprus, while Dortmund lost 1-3 in London to Tottenham.
9/26/2017 9:19:45 AM
<![CDATA[Cypriot, Greek experts in Egypt to discuss ways of cooperation ]]>
The workshop provided innovative ideas and joint researches to translate such partnership and common projects among the three Eastern Mediterranean countries.

Nabil Fahmy, Dean of School of Global Affairs at American University in Cairo (AUC), delivered the opening address stressing that there is a need to more commercial agreements to make a link between Eastern Mediterranean and Europe.

“Renewable energy is the only solution for the future. We can integrate all types of energy to renewable, adding Zafarana area is one of the resource of Egypt renewable energy,” said Amr Serag Eldin, a professor at the Department of Petroleum in AUC.

For his part, Theodoros Tskiris, a professor of Energy policy in University of Nicosia (UNIC,) pointed out that we have expectations to increase our volume of Petroleum through Zohr Field, and that there are other areas in Egypt and Cyprus that needed to be discovered.

The workshop also discussed critical issues that our region faces and that poses a big need for more and more cooperation to confront and overcome these challenges.
The experts confirmed that these challenges can be a great opportunity to do a lot of joint projects especially in the field of petroleum and security.

It is expected that the fifth round of trilateral summit between Cyprus, Egypt and Greece will be held next November in Nicosia to discuss means of supporting and enhancing relations between the three countries.
9/26/2017 9:10:55 AM
<![CDATA[Energy sharing: Egypt becoming a hub?]]>
Organized by the American University in Cairo, a workshop was held at the Cairo Marriot Zamalek Hotel, where academics and officials from the three Eastern Mediterranean countries met and held in-depth panels cooperation in the field of energy and security.

Benefits of cooperation between the three countries in terms of energy cost reduction and meeting national demands were highlighted by participants.

“Egypt is our best partner and an energy player…and we must promote mutual cooperation on natural gas…because it is essential for us as Egypt has the potentials to become an energy hub in the region,” Nicholas Papadopoulos, the President of the Democratic Party in Cyprus, told Egypt Today.

Papadopoulos, who is also a presidential candidate, said that if he were to win the elections, set to be held in Feb. 2018, one of the first things his government would embark on “is to find ways to conclude commercial agreements with Egypt to exporting and exploiting natural gas.”

Panels further discussed new gas discoveries in Egypt and its viability to enhance such cooperation, like Zohr gas field, which is the largest ever natural gas found in the Mediterranean Sea.

“We do not have to wait for new discoveries…we should move forward in cooperation [between the three countries] …it is the best way…lets succeed in bringing prosperity,” said Papadopoulos.

Energy sharing

Amr Serag Eldin, Professor at the Department of Petroleum and Energy Engineering at the AUC proposed a project of sharing energy by connecting national electric grids of both Egypt and Cyprus together, with particular emphasis on renewable energy potentials.

The project includes bridging the connection gap between both countries through the shortest route with a distance of only 338km, which can be spanned by submersible DC electrical cables, Serag Eldin told Egypt Today in an interview Monday.

image 2
Slideshow of a presentation on natural gas grid in Egypt - Photo by Nourhan Magdi/Egypt Today.

Discussing advantages of such connection, he explained that the project “shares diversified energy resources…reduces margin of inefficient spinning reserve and reduces peak loads due to different timing zones.”

According to Professor Serag Eldin, wind power would constitute the highest share of electricity generated of renewable energy in 2020, reaching 12 percent compared to only 2 percent coming from solar power and 5.8 percent from hydropower.

He explained that sharing of energy storage among the three countries allow for wider use of renewable energy, "from the concept that it is always windy somewhere."

“We have one of the best places in the world in Egypt with speed winds like in Zaafarana region, where average wind speeds reach 10m/s,” he said, adding that “future is in wind energy.”

For his part, Nabil Fahmy, dean of School of Global Affairs and Public Policy at the American University in Cairo said that despite possible challenges to the proposed cooperation, be it economic or political, they should be addressed through free tripartite debates.

Fahmy saw that integration between the three countries “achieves direct interest to Egypt.”

Benefits of this cooperation is that “it reduces cost of Egyptian product in the field of energy, enabling Egypt to export surplus energy to other countries especially in Europe, in addition to enabling it to utilize its potentials like: oil and gas refining,” he added.

Other competitors: why Turkey excluded?

During the discussions, questions rose regarding whether Turkey is a competitor to Egypt in the field of energy, where some of the participants referred to “distracting policies of Turkey in the region” as a reason of hindering possible cooperation between Ankara and the three countries.

Charalambos Papasotiriou, Professor of Strategic Studies Panteion University in Greece, praised “serious discussions” held by the three countries regarding energy cooperation, “I hope this will be a breakthrough.”

He said that Turkey is being excluded from the energy sharing concept discussed throughout the workshop, saying “Turkey’s stance has been erratic…trying to meet domestic needs of Erdogan. Turkey’s policy is not dependable or predictable…it is problematic for us.”

He added “people in the region want to avoid Turkey pipeline even if it is cheaper,” referring to the so-called Turkish Stream pipeline agreed upon last October.

Bloomberg reported in July that Turkey asked Israel to push Cyprus into allowing the pipeline to pass through its waters so the region’s natural gas can be exported to Europe.

Theodoros Tsakiris, an Assistant Professor at the University of Nicosia specializing on the geopolitics and economics of oil & gas, referred to the ongoing Turkish military occupation of the northern third of the Cyprus islands as one of the reasons for the conflict between Cyprus, Greece and Turkey.

He further explained that other reasons “have to deal with the aggressive and imperialist policy by Turkey…it is violating international maritime law and claiming parts of Cyprus and Greece do not exist."]]>
9/26/2017 8:36:44 AM
<![CDATA[Google weaves touch controls into Levi Strauss jacket]]>
The iconic California clothing maker, which has a legacy reaching back to Gold Rush in the mid-1800s, will mine the mobile internet boom with a "Trucker Jacket with Jacquard."

The denim jacket aimed at bicyclists has a sleeve cuff made of special Jacquard fabric that synchronizes wirelessly with smartphones, enabling a limited set of commands using swipes or taps, a video posted at YouTube by Levi Strauss showed.

"As we see it, this isn't just about technology for technology's sake ? it's about addressing a real need for our consumers on the go," said Levi vice president of global product innovation Paul Dillinger.

"This garment allows cyclists to literally navigate their rides, and manage other simple tasks, while never having to take their eyes off the road."

Google engineer Ivan Poupyrev said in a blog post that first and foremost, "it's a jacket. Like any regular denim jacket, you can wash it (just remove the snap tag), it's durable, designed to be comfortable for cycling and it'll keep you warm on and off the bike."

Poupyrev said the garment enables users to "perform common digital tasks -- like starting or stopping music, getting directions or reading incoming text messages -- by simply swiping or tapping the jacket sleeve."

The Levi's Commuter Trucker jackets will be priced at $350 when then become available in select US shops beginning Wednesday and at the levi.com website on October 2.

Slightly more than two years ago, Google used its annual developers conference in San Francisco to reveal Project Jacquard and to spotlight Levi Strauss as its first partner.

Named after a Frenchman who invented a type of loom, Project Jacquard is in the hands of a small Google team called Advanced Technology and Projects (ATAP).

Conductive threads can be woven into a wide array of fabrics, and be made to visually stand out or go unnoticed depending on designers' wishes.]]>
9/26/2017 7:10:00 AM
<![CDATA[European ambassadors to U.S. back Iran nuclear pact]]>
U.S. President Donald Trump is weighing whether the 2015 deal serves U.S. security interests as he faces a mid-October deadline for certifying that Iran is complying with the pact, a decision that could sink an agreement strongly supported by the other world powers that negotiated it.

"We agree that the demise of this agreement would be a major loss," David O'Sullivan, the European Union's envoy in Washington, said at an Atlantic Council panel discussion.

German Ambassador Peter Wittig said anyone advocating walking away should consider "larger issues," including an increased danger Iran would resume enrichment, danger of a nuclear arms race in an unstable region and impact on global nonproliferation efforts.

"What kind of signal would this send to countries like North Korea?" Wittig asked. "It would send a signal that diplomacy is not reliable, that you can't trust diplomatic agreements, and that would affect, I believe, our credibility in the West when we're not honoring an agreement that Iran has not violated."

If Trump does not recertify by Oct. 16, Congress has 60 days to decide whether to reimpose sanctions suspended under the accord.

That would let Congress, which is controlled by Trump's fellow Republicans, effectively decide whether to kill the deal. Although congressional leaders have declined to say whether they would seek to reimpose sanctions, every Republican lawmaker opposed the deal reached by Democratic President Barack Obama's administration.

Many, like Trump, have made opposition to the agreement a campaign issue.

If Washington pulls out of the deal, the ambassadors said they would do everything possible to protect any companies based in Europe that continue to do business with Iran from reimposed U.S. sanctions.

Britain's ambassador, Kim Darroch, said Trump and Prime Minister Theresa May had devoted about half their discussion to Iran when they met in New York last week, although Trump did not reveal his decision.

He said May had explained again why Britain supports the nuclear pact, seeing it as a matter of national security. "As long as the Iranians continue to comply with it, in the view of the IAEA, we will continue to support it," he said, referring to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Speaking separately at another event in Washington, White House national security adviser H.R. McMaster defended Trump's criticism of the deal.

"I obviously agree with the president on this, I think it was the worst deal. It gave Iran all of the benefits up front," McMaster said, adding that it had the "fatal flaw of a 'sunset clause'." He was speaking at an event hosted by the Institute for the Study of War.

The so-called sunset clauses are provisions under which some of the deal's restrictions on Iran's nuclear program expire from 2025.

French Ambassador Gerard Araud noted that the other countries that signed the pact - Russia, China and Iran - had made clear that they do not support renegotiating.]]>
9/26/2017 7:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[Egyptian duo occupies fifth place in World Rowing Championship]]>
The tournament saw on Sunday the appointment of Amr Tamraz, adviser to the Development Committee of the International Federation, after being selected by the officials of the Union because of his experience.

It is worth mentioning that Tamraz is the director of sports activities of the association at Sharjah UAE Club. He has also trained several clubs inside and outside Egypt.

This appointment was based on his distinguished sports biography. He holds a master's degree from Oslo’s National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) in the field of sports training, physiological sciences and psychological sciences. He also works as a physical training teacher at the Norwegian Police College and a researcher at the Physical Training Center of the Norwegian Armed Forces.
9/26/2017 7:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[Facebook, Google bound to change handling of political ads]]>
Speaking at a trade conference, the marketers seized on allegations that Russian operatives bought U.S. political ads on Facebook as evidence that the sector cannot go on being unregulated.

"I think there will be more scrutiny, and there better be more self-regulation. Otherwise, I think regulation will be coming," Brent McGoldrick, a political ad consultant and a Republican, said at Advertising Week New York.

Last week, Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg vowed to do more to deter governments from using Facebook to manipulate elections in other countries, after the company disclosed $100,000 in Russian ad purchases in the months before and after the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

The 3,000 ads included some that highlighted support for Democrat Hillary Clinton among Muslim women, as well as others that showed a deep understanding of U.S. social divides, the Washington Post reported on Monday.

Facebook shares ended down 4.5 percent on Monday, closing at $162.87, as some investors worried the tech sector had become too expensive.

Zuckerberg has also unveiled sweeping changes to how his company handles political ads, saying it would make them visible to all users regardless of whom the ads target.

Andrew Capone, senior vice president of NCC Media, a cable trade group, joked on Monday's panel that during the 2016 election campaign, "Facebook took in over 300 million rubles - I'm sorry, dollars."

McGoldrick said on the panel: "If I were Facebook and Google and everyone else, I would be developing a code of conduct and a set of criteria. They may already exist, but obviously it's not either robust enough or transparent enough."

Google has said it has no evidence on its ad platform of a Russian propaganda campaign like the one Facebook found.

The two Silicon Valley firms are set to take a combined 63 percent of the U.S. market this year, according to research firm eMarketer.

Though Facebook and Google have for years resisted regulation of political ads, congressional investigators and U.S. special counsel Robert Mueller have helped to change the situation, said Jefrey Pollock, president of public relations firm Global Strategy Group.

"Things change with a subpoena," Pollock, a Democrat, said as part of the panel.]]>
9/26/2017 6:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[Egypt, China discuss implementation of Ain Sokhna-Al Alamein railway line]]>
The two sides reviewed the proposed route of the line, which comprises five main stations; namely Ain Sokhna, administrative capital, 6th of October, Alexandria and Al Alamein, as well as six sub stations.

The minister asked the Chinese delegation to make some adjustments to the proposed project so that the speed would be increased to 250 km/h instead of 160 km/h and an Alexandria/Borg el Arab line would be added to the first phase and transformed into a double electric line.

The line will be for passengers and goods and will be connected in an exchange station in 6th of October with another line to reach Aswan.]]>
9/26/2017 5:30:00 AM
<![CDATA[Woman becomes first US Marine Corps infantry officer]]>
Many women serve in the Marines and other branches of America's armed forces but the woman, who has requested that her name not be released, is the first to make it through the Marine Corps' 13-week infantry officer training course.

"I am proud of this officer and those in her class," Marine Corps commandant General Robert Neller said.

"Marines expect and rightfully deserve competent and capable leaders, and these (Infantry Officer Course) graduates met every training requirement as they prepare for the next challenge of leading infantry Marines; ultimately, in combat," Neller added.

As an infantry officer, the woman, a lieutenant, will be assigned to lead a platoon of around 40 Marines. She will join the 1st Marine Division in Camp Pendleton, California, the Marines said.

A total of 131 Marines started the infantry officer training course in July and 88 graduated on Monday in Quantico, Virginia, the Marine Corps said.

Three dozen female Marine Corps officers had previously signed up for the infantry training program but failed to finish, according to the Marine Corps Times.

On its Twitter feed, the Marine Corps released a video showing the woman taking part in exercises in the mountains alongside male infantry officer candidates.

Women make up about 15 percent of the nearly 1.4 million active duty troops in the US armed forces.

Former president Barack Obama opened up all military positions to women, including combat units, in March 2016.

Women were previously technically barred from combat, but thousands of American servicewomen saw fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq nonetheless.

The Marines have been seen as the branch of the US military that has been the least accepting of women in combat roles and the infantry plays a special role in the lore of the Corps.

Earlier this year, the Marine Corps was rocked by the revelation of a secret Facebook group called "Marines United" where nude pictures of female Marines were posted without their consent.

In 2015, two women became the first to graduate from the US Army's elite Ranger School.

In July, a woman reportedly applied to become a member of the celebrated Navy SEALs but dropped out before completing the selection program.

9/26/2017 5:10:00 AM
<![CDATA[UAE vice president praises significant economic growth in Egypt]]>
Sheikh Mohammed welcomed President Sisi, emphasizing the strength of the brotherly relations between the two countries and its people, the UAE official news agency reported.

The UAE vice president exchanged talks with the Egyptian President on a number of bilateral and regional issues of mutual interest, stressing the importance of strengthening friendly ties and cooperation between the UAE and Egypt at various levels.

Sheikh Mohammed praised role played by Egypt, particularly about regional security, safeguarding Arab interests, and working to consolidate the foundations of peace and stability within the region.

He also lauded the remarkable economic growth witness by Egypt, and its progressive development in its public services across Egyptian governorates and cities, providing the best possible living standards for its citizens.

During the meeting, Sheikh Mohammed also reiterated the importance of strengthening solidarity between the UAE, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain to reaffirm the values of peace, tolerance and stability in region, and combating extremism, fanaticism, and terrorism both regionally and globally. ]]>
9/26/2017 4:30:00 AM
<![CDATA[Seoul urges US to avoid 'further escalation' with N. Korea]]>
"It is very likely that North Korea will conduct further provocations," South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha said in a speech in Washington.

"It is imperative that we, Korea and the US together, manage the situation... in order to prevent further escalation of tensions or any kind of accidental military clashes which can quickly go out of control."

9/26/2017 4:10:00 AM
<![CDATA[Egypt, China discuss Ain Sokhna-Al Alamein railway line]]>
The two sides reviewed the proposed route of the line, which comprises five main stations; namely Ain Sokhna, administrative capital, 6th of October, Alexandria and Al Alamein, as well as six sub stations.

The minister asked the Chinese delegation to make some adjustments to the proposed project so that the speed would be increased to 250 km/h instead of 160 km/h and an Alexandria/Borg el Arab line would be added to the first phase and transformed into a double electric line.

The line will be for passengers and goods and will be connected in an exchange station in 6th of October with another line to reach Aswan.]]>
9/26/2017 4:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[PM affirms determination to complete reform policy in all fields]]>
The premier told reporters that a decision was issued to constantly stop the import of sugar as the country has a sufficient storage.

Ismail said that shares of the Engineering Co. for the Petroleum and Process Industries (Enppi) would be enlisted in the Egyptian stock exchange.

He added that the ministers of transport and public business sector are planned to prepare lists of companies in their sectors to be enlisted in the bourse.

The premiere said new appointments of bank heads would be announced within a week.

On his meeting with a British delegation under UK trade envoy to Egypt Sir Jeffrey Donaldson, Ismail said they discussed topics related to the economic reform, the investment climate and the participation of a number of companies in many projects in Egypt.]]>
9/26/2017 3:50:00 AM
<![CDATA[Mexico teaches quake volunteers not to make things worse]]>
Professional rescuers warned of chaos in the dangerous rubble piles, saying blundering volunteers could cause further collapse in unstable structures.

"You don't save lives with your heart, you save them with organization," said rescue worker Juan Carlos Gutierrez, his voice rising almost to a shout.

So far the volunteers, helping professional rescue workers, have dragged more than 100 people out of the ruins left by the September 19 quake that caused widespread destruction across Mexico City.

But, seeing the risks they pose, a dozen groups of so-called "moles" -- as the diggers who burrow their way into collapsed buildings are known -- organized courses for would-be volunteers.

These cover everything from how to master their emotions to the rapid extraction of people and the removal of valuables from the ruins.

- 'Everyone wants to be a hero' -

The enthusiastic volunteers, ranging in age from the very old to the very young, start their free, eight-hour course with the basics.

"So, how fast should we be walking?" Gutierrez asked his class as they began their course under the hot sun.

"At 120 paces a minute, or 130 paces a minute if we are told to speed up," said one of the volunteers, notebook in hand.

Gutierrez, a short, heavyset man, intoned in a quasi-military tone: "There's no point running!"

Other instructors reminded recruits that despite completing the course, their task will not be to lift debris or take people out of the ruins, tasks that demand a higher level of training.

"One of our volunteers said he had experience and then rappelled down a rope and started hitting a wall with a mallet, it was a disaster," said Brandon Cid, one of the trainers at the Parque Bicentenario, which saw 650 people take part in the first day, with another 400 on the waiting list.

"Be careful! Instead of helping, we can become part of the problem," the instructors kept reminding volunteers.

"Everyone wants to be a hero in a situation like this and that's not good," said Dia Ordaz, a volunteer who had signed up for a class.

Ordaz, a 36-year-old teacher, said there were multiple hazards in the work, including "gas leaks, haywire traffic, clashes between people."

With tears in his eyes, he recalled the "marvel" of so many volunteers showing up by foot or on motorbike not only in the rubble piles but also to distribute aid to victims on foot, or by bicycle and motorbike.

"Yes, it is frightening, but when they say there is someone in the rubble, it's impressive to see how thousands of people can show up to help one person, no matter who it is," he said.

- Not everyone helps -

In the minutes immediately after the quake, hundreds of people formed human chains to remove, stone by stone, fallen walls, staircases and roofs.

"Unfortunately not everyone helped" and "we saw the risks that were created, and people had to learn that you can't help simply with your heart," Gutierrez told AFP.

"We already have lives at risk and people in danger, and we can't have any more added to that," said the rescue worker who had also pulled people from the ruins during the even more devastating earthquake that rocked Mexico City on the same day, September 19, 1985.

He also helped rescue efforts in the quake that hit Oaxaca and Chiapas in the southeast of the country on September 7.

As of Wednesday, most of the rescue workers had been placed under the supervision of the Mexican Marines, but there were also expert experts deployed from Israel, the United States, Japan, Spain and Germany, as well as other countries.]]>
9/26/2017 3:40:00 AM
<![CDATA[UAE hails Egypt's role in safeguarding Arab national security]]>
Sheikh Mohammed welcomed President Sisi, emphasizing the strength of relations between the two countries and its people, the spokesman added.

The UAE vice president praised the role played by Egypt, particularly about regional security, safeguarding Arab interests, and working to consolidate the foundations of peace and stability within the region.

He also lauded the remarkable economic growth witnessed by Egypt, and its progressive development in its public services across Egyptian governorates and cities.

For his part, Sisi hailed Dubai for being a model for achieving sustainable development in the Arab region.

He lauded distinguished relations linking Egypt and the UAE.

The talks dealt with ways to boost friendly ties and cooperation at all levels, as well as recent regional developments and issues of common concern.]]>
9/26/2017 3:40:00 AM
<![CDATA[Ad campaign against Qatar’s terror support launched in New York]]>
The unidentified campaign coincided with the Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani’s visit to the United States to participate in the 72nd session of the UN General Assembly.

Qatar had launched an advertisement campaign in London last month using black cabs that were painted with the Qatari flag and slogans calling for ending the boycott imposed by Arab countries against Qatar.

More than three months ago, the Gulf has been hit by its biggest diplomatic crisis in years after Arab nations including Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain cut ties with Qatar, accusing it of destabilising the region with its support for Islamist groups.

The Arab quartet halted all land, air and sea traffic with Qatar, and withdrew their diplomats and ambassadors from the Qatari peninsula. The Arab quartet issued 13 demands to Doha – then shortened to six principles - including closing Al Jazeera television, curbing relations with Iran and shutting a Turkish military base.
9/26/2017 3:21:56 AM
<![CDATA[Puerto Rico evacuates area near crumbling dam, asks for aid]]>
Much of the Caribbean island, a U.S. territory with a population of 3.4 million, is still without electricity five days after Maria struck with ferocious winds and torrential rains, the most powerful hurricane to hit Puerto Rico in nearly a century.

There have been growing concerns for some 70,000 people who live in the river valley below the Guajataca Dam in the island's northwest, where cracks were seen on Friday in the 88-year-old earthen structure.

Rossello said he was working on the assumption that the 120-foot (35-meter) dam would collapse.

"I'd rather be wrong on that front than doing nothing and having that fail and costing people lives," he said in an interview with CNN. "Most of the people in the near vicinity have evacuated."

It was unclear if the governor was saying that most of the 70,000 valley inhabitants had left the area, or only the several hundred people living in the small towns closest to the dam. About 320 people from those towns have moved to safety, according to local media.

The fear of a potentially catastrophic dam break added to the immense task facing disaster relief authorities after Maria, which was the second major hurricane to strike the Caribbean this month. The storm killed at least 29 people in the region, at least 10 of those in Puerto Rico, which was already battling an economic crisis.

Rossello said that before the storms struck, he had been embarking on an aggressive fiscal agenda that included more than $1.5 billion in cuts.

"This is a game changer," he told CNN. "This is a completely different set of circumstances. This needs to be taken into consideration otherwise there will be a humanitarian crisis."


Brock Long, administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and Tom Bossert, senior adviser to the Department of Homeland Security, met with Rossello on Monday.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told reporters in Washington that the administration was engaged in a fact-finding process to figure out how much help Puerto Rico needs.

"The federal response has been anything but slow," Sanders said at the daily briefing. "In fact, there's been an unprecedented push through of billions of dollars in federal assistance that the administration has fought for."

Many structures on Puerto Rico, including hospitals, remain badly damaged and flooded, with clean drinking water hard to find in some areas. Few planes have been able to land or take off from damaged airports.

The storm has also put a big strain on PREPA, the island's electricity utility, which declared bankruptcy in July after accumulating a $9 billion debt and years of underinvestment.

From preliminary FEMA reports, it is estimated that 55 percent of transmission towers may be down, and that more than 90 percent of the distribution system could have been destroyed.

More than 91 percent of Puerto Rico's cellphone sites are also out of service, the Federal Communications Commission said.

There are more than 10,000 federal staff, including more than 700 people from FEMA, doing recovery work in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, according to FEMA.

The National Weather Service warned of further flash floods in the west of the island on Monday as thunderstorms moved in.

Maria would likely be downgraded from a hurricane to a tropical storm on Tuesday night, the National Hurricane Center said. As of 2 p.m. EDT (1800 GMT) on Monday, the center said, it was about 300 miles (480 km) south-southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, heading slowly north.

The storm was unlikely to hit the continental United States directly, but the NHC said large swells were affecting the U.S. East Coast. A tropical storm warning was in effect for much of the North Carolina coast and officials issued a mandatory evacuation order for visitors to Ocracoke Island in the Outer Banks that went into effect at 5 a.m. EDT (0900 GMT) on Monday.]]>
9/26/2017 3:10:00 AM
<![CDATA[HCMR committee for presidential elections holds 1st meeting]]>
“The meeting will highlight key topics, including the Council’s commitment to guaranteeing equal opportunities to the presidential candidates, conducting and evaluating their complaints,” HCMR source said earlier.

Makram Mohamed Ahmed, the head of the Higher Council for Media Regulation (HCMR) pointed out, that the goal of the committee is to raise the amount of people voting. “We will only achieve our goals with the participation of the citizens,” Ahmed stated.

The Training Committee of the Council will hold training courses for journalists and media professionals who will cover the upcoming presidential elections. A source at the council said that the training program includes workshops that will be attended by media experts from inside and outside the council.
9/26/2017 3:08:15 AM
<![CDATA[Egypt tightens security restraints on Qatari visitors]]>
He announced that Egyptian passport holders require state security permit to travel to Turkey and Sudan.

Anwar stressed that Egyptians willing to visit Qatar will not need security authorization, while Qataris’ visa-free entry to Egypt has been halted – a measure taken against Doha only in the Gulf area.

Qatari nationals will now have to apply for a visa to enter Egypt, the assistant minister added.

The development comes more than three months after Egypt, along with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, cut diplomatic ties with Qatar and imposed an air, sea and land blockade on the country. The quartet accused Doha of supporting and hosting extremists and fugitives on its territories.

9/26/2017 3:04:20 AM
<![CDATA[Osiris hosts ‘One Day Workshops’ with director Sameh Abdel Aziz]]>
Making a film is a test of talent, team spirit and requires saint-like patience. It is the process of making mission impossible to mission achievable by turning mere written words from script into real characters, incidents, and morals to reach audiences' purgation. It always starts with an idea or inspiration sprouts in the head of the director, script writer, producer, or author.

The workshop will focus on the rules and basics of film production. The focus will be on two important schools: realism and cinema, the used styles, and the difference between them.

If you are a fan or interested in participating in the workshop, you can send an e-mail on the Osiris page, identify yourself, mention why you would like to share and visit Osiris office to write the application form for the workshop. Osiris location is Saif El Din Building No. 1, Hassan Mourad Street, Kasr El Ainy Street, Halwani Building, Tseppas, and 2nd Floor.

Sameh Abdel Aziz is a famous Egyptian Director who directed drama and comic movies like "Sarkhet Namla" or (ant scream), “Tattah,” "El Farah" or (the wedding), and “Tita Rahiba” or "My Horrible Grandma."

He graduated from High Institute of Cinema 1996, and started as a director in the Egyptian television. Later worked for Rotana Channel and directed Hala Sarhan's Egyptian famous TV show.

9/26/2017 2:57:25 AM
<![CDATA[Karim Hendawi stars in Champions League with Beşiktaş]]>
In a match against Metallurg, Hendawi was a main reason for a 31-27 win. Thanks to several crucial saves from the Egyptian goalkeeper, the team defeated their competition.

The win over Metallurg was a historic result. It was Beşiktaş’s second win away at the Champions League.

The official Champions League handball page on Facebook considers his saves as one of the top five saves in the second round of the tournament.

Hendawi moved to Beşiktaş at the start of the season after his contract with Zamalek ended.

Hendawi is one of the key players in the national handball team, crowned with the Pharaohs in the 2016 African Cup of Nations, and he participated with the Pharaohs at the 2017 World Cup in France.
9/26/2017 2:50:00 AM
<![CDATA[Brazil to reinstate protection for Amazon reserve -source]]>
President Michel Temer's administration has decided to revoke an August decree abolishing the National Reserve of Copper and Associates (Renca), an area of roughly 17,800 square miles (46,100 square kilometers), or slightly larger than Denmark, where mining had been prohibited since 1984, the government source said.

The decision will be announced in the official gazette Tuesday, the person said, requesting anonymity as the decision was not public yet]]>
9/26/2017 2:40:00 AM
<![CDATA[UK trade envoy to Egypt hails meeting with PM as positive]]>
In statements, Donaldson, who is leading a delegation of heads of seven major companies on a visit to the country, said the UK realizes Egypt's importance to the regional stability.

He expressed his optimism about economic reforms in Egypt, adding that steps taken by the Egyptian government are very encouraging.

Donaldson affirmed that the British international trade team is making strenuous efforts to support trade in Egypt. ]]>
9/26/2017 2:40:00 AM
<![CDATA[4G mobile service to be officially launched in Egypt Thursday]]>
In a statement on Monday, the NTRA said a ceremony will be organized at the Pyramids’ sound and light area to launch the new service.

Prime Minister Sherif Ismail and Communications and Information Technology Minister Yasser el Kady will attend the ceremony, it added.]]>
9/26/2017 2:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[Karim Mamoun 227th in tennis players’ world rankings]]>
Egypt Today shows Egyptian players’ rankings according to the official site for ATP in the following report:

1. Karim Mamoun, 26 years old, is in 227th place with 224 points.
2. Mohammed Safwat, 27 years old, is in 249th place with 204 points.
3. Yousef Hossam, 19 years old, is in 334th place with 144 points.
4. Issam Al-Taweel, 28 years old, is in 771st place with 25 points.
5. Sherif Sabri, 31 years old, is in 909th place with 15 points.
6. Mazen Osama, 22 years old, is in 989th place with 11 points.
Karim Hossam, 23 years old, is in 1140th place with 7 points.
8. Akram Al-Salali, 19 years old, is in 1251st place with 5 points.
9. Samy Gerik, 18 years old, is in 1323rd place with 4 points.
10. Mustafa Hatem, 22 years old, is in 1768th place with a single point.
11. Mohammed Abu Al-Qasim, 19 years old, is in 1877th place with a single point.
12. Mohammed Abdul Aziz, 18 year old, is in 2042nd place.
9/26/2017 2:00:00 AM
<![CDATA[Police sentry shot dead in brawl with criminal's brother in Assiut]]>
A police force was patrolling a town in Assiut when it suspected three people on a tuk-tuk vehicle, the ministry said in a statement.

The three men opened fire at the force when it stopped them, the ministry said, adding the force returned fire, killing one and wounding another. The third fled.

The wounded man was admitted to hospital, and when his relatives tried to enter, a police sentry prevented them, it said.

A brawl erupted and the brother of the wounded man shot dead the sentry and fled, it added.

A manhunt was launched to arrest the two men.]]>
9/26/2017 1:50:00 AM
<![CDATA[King Salman, President Sisi boosting relations in all fields]]>
Saudi King Salman and President Abdel Fattah El Sisi are developing the bilateral ties in various fields in a way that serves the interests of their peoples, bin Saleh said a ceremony marking the kingdom’s national day.

The kingdom rejects terrorism and all forms of violence and supports other states in their fight against terror, he said.]]>
9/26/2017 1:20:00 AM
<![CDATA[U.S. citizen detained in Yemeni capital Sanaa -colleagues]]>
The Iran-aligned Houthis control much of northern Yemen, including Sanaa, and are battling a Saudi-led coalition that is trying to restore the internationally recognised government.

Nadia Burch told Reuters that her husband, Danny Lavon Burch, was seized on Saturday after taking his children to school. He had been working in Yemen since the late 1980s, currently with the oil company Safer, said Burch, a Yemeni.

"He has no problems or disputes with anyone, which is why he didn't leave as others did," she said. "I ask for the release of my husband and his safe return to me."

A U.S. State Department official said they were aware and concerned about the report.

The Houthi movement did not respond to a request for comment and the Safer oil company was also not immediately available for comment.

Two of Mr. Burch's colleagues in Sanaa said Houthi forces were responsible, without elaborating. But Nadia Burch said the kidnappers had not contacted her and she was unsure of their identity.

More than 10,000 people have been killed in Yemen's civil war. It began in March 2015 when the Houthis advanced on the interim headquarters of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi in the southern port city of Aden, forcing him to flee the country and seek Saudi help.]]>
9/26/2017 1:10:00 AM
<![CDATA[Turkey's Erdogan threatens oil flow from Iraq's Kurdish area]]>
Erdogan spoke shortly after Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said Ankara could take punitive measures involving borders and air space against the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) over the referendum and would not recognise the outcome.

Voting began on Monday despite strong opposition from Iraq's central government and neighbouring Turkey and Iran - both with significant Kurdish populations - as well as Western warnings the move could aggravate Middle East instability.

Erdogan, grappling with a long-standing Kurdish insurgency in Turkey's southeast, which borders northern Iraq, said the "separatist" referendum was unacceptable and economic, trade and security counter-measures would be taken.

He stopped short of saying Turkey had decided to close off the oil flow. Hundreds of thousands of barrels of oil a day come through the pipeline in Turkey from northern Iraq, but he made clear the option was on the table.

"After this, let's see through which channels the northern Iraqi regional government will send its oil, or where it will sell it," he said in a speech. "We have the tap. The moment we close the tap, then it's done."

Yildirim said Ankara would decide on punitive measures against the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) after talks with Iraq's central government.

"Our energy, interior and customs ministries are working on (measures). We are evaluating steps regarding border gates and air space. We will take these steps quickly," Yildirim told Turkish broadcasters.

Iraqi soldiers arrived in Turkey on Monday night to join a drill on the Turkish side of the border near the Habur area in the southeast, Turkey's military said in a statement. Iraq's defence ministry said the two armies started "major manoeuvres" at the border area.


Local media said Turkey had blocked access to the KRG via the Habur border crossing with Iraq. Ankara's customs minister denied this, saying Habur remained open but with tight controls on traffic, according to the state-run Anadolu agency.

However, Erdogan later said traffic was only being allowed to cross from the Turkish side of the border into Iraq.

Maruf Ari, a 50-year-old truck driver, was one of those who had crossed back into Turkey early on Monday morning. He said a closure of the gate would ruin his livelihood.

"If the border is closed it will harm all of us. I'm doing this job for 20 years. I'm not making a lot of money. Around 1,000 lira ($285) a month. But if the gate is closed, we will go hungry."

The United States and other Western powers also urged authorities in the KRG to cancel the vote, saying it would distract from the fight against Islamic State.

Shares of Turkish Airlines, which has direct flights to northern Iraq, tumbled 6.5 percent, underperforming a 1.78 percent decline in the BIST 100 index. Turkey's currency, the lira, also weakened.

Turkey took the Kurdish television channel Rudaw off its satellite service TurkSat, a Turkish broadcasting official told Reuters.

Turkey has long been northern Iraq's main link to the outside world, but sees the referendum as a grave matter for its own national security. Turkey has the region's largest Kurdish population and has been fighting a three-decade insurgency in its mainly Kurdish southeast.


On Saturday, Turkey's parliament voted to extend by a year a mandate authorising the deployment of troops in Iraq and Syria.

Still, Ankara is unlikely to make rash moves when it comes to sanctions against the KRG, said Nihat Ali Ozcan, a professor of political science and international relations at TOBB University of Economics and Technology.

"Closing the border gate, cancelling international flights and, at the final step, cutting the pipeline can be discussed," he said. "Military pressure can be used directly or indirectly."

The Turkish army launched military exercises involving tanks and armoured vehicles near the Habur border crossing a week ago and they are expected to continue until at least Sept. 26. Additional units joined the exercises as they entered their second stage

Turkey's military said in its statement that the third phase of the drill would be held on Sept. 26, and that Iraqi soldiers who arrived on Monday night would join.

The military has also in recent days carried out daily air strikes against Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) targets in northern Iraq, where the group's commanders are based.

The PKK launched its separatist insurgency in 1984, and more than 40,000 people have been killed since. It is designated a terrorist group by Turkey, the United States and European Union.

Militants in northern Iraq launched a cross-border mortar attack into Turkey's Hakkari province, hitting a temporary residence used by refugees, the interior ministry said. One refugee was killed and several others were injured, it said.

In the eastern Agri province, near the border with Iran, individuals thought to be Kurdish militants opened fire on a mini-bus carrying foreign nationals, the ministry said. Three people were killed and four wounded in that attack, it said.]]>
9/26/2017 12:30:00 AM
<![CDATA[PM issues forms ministerial committee to settle investment disputes]]>
The committee will be headed by the justice minister and includes the ministers of housing, investment and international cooperation, trade and industry, finance and local development as members, according to the decision, which was published in the official gazette Monday. ]]>
9/26/2017 12:20:00 AM
<![CDATA[‘Youth Love Egypt’ to raise awareness about Fayoum reserves]]>
This comes as part of the role of civil society organizations in the government's involvement in awareness-raising and development in all different sectors.

The role of Youth Who Loves Egypt is providing its awareness and education with regard to environmental issues, and nature reserves in particular, the statement added.

"According to the protocol, the ministry is concerned with the provision of environmental researchers and transfers within the reserve," said Ahmed Fathi, president of Youth Who Love Egypt, which is concerned with designing and printing awareness-raising brochures on conservation literature.

Also, Youth Who Love Egypt are interested in devoting their efforts by providing their members for four days every week to work and volunteer within the protected areas to teach visitors about how to preserve them, as well as about their history and all information visitors might be looking for, the statement further mentioned.
9/25/2017 11:33:35 PM
<![CDATA[Sisi arrives in Dubai, meets with Mohamed bin Rashid]]>
Presidential spokesman Alaa Youssef said that Mohamed bin Rashid stressed on the critical, strong ties between the two countries and said that the UAE is keen on strengthening cooperation with Egypt to achieve regional stability and the values of peace and tolerance, rather than extremism and hate.

Mohamed bin Rashid praised the Egyptian efforts and Egypt’s national role with regard to Arab national security and protecting Arab interests. The meeting discussed bilateral relations and the means of enhancing mutual collaboration in various fields. They also reviewed a number of issues of mutual concern. The two countries agreed on the need to fight terrorism and stop its funding and political and media coverage.

Sisi praised the economic and social progress the UAE has achieved over the past years, which made Dubai a good model for sustainable development. He also praised the UAE’s permanent support for the will of the Egyptian people.

The meeting was attended by a number of Emirati ministers and high-level officials, including Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince, and Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs.

"The UAE has topped the list of investing countries in Egypt, as they are currently investing a total value of $6.2 billion in 868 projects in the sectors of communications, banking, real estate development and tourism," Minister of Industry and Foreign Trade Tarek Kabil said Monday.

9/25/2017 10:47:55 PM
<![CDATA[Mashrou' Leila’s concert sparks great controversy in Egypt]]>
Social media websites are wondering how this band received permission to hold this concert. People were demanding to know how official permission was given to hold a concert in which young people participated in a manner that contradicts Egyptian values. However, the Lebanese band is famous for acting contrary to values and ethics.

A senior security source said on Monday that the organizers of New Cairo’s concert, in which a number of youths promoted their homosexual orientation, had not obtained security permits.

Security forces arrested a person responsible for filming and promoting the concert on his Facebook page, the source said, adding that a number of people who raised the LGBT flags at the concert were identified, and measures are underway to arrest them.
In the same context, security services arrested seven homosexuals for inciting immorality and the promotion of homosexuality by raising gay and lesbian flags during the concert.

The source said the musicians’ syndicate will ban the band from performing any shows in Egypt in the future.
9/25/2017 10:41:20 PM
<![CDATA['They are not terrorists': witness defends jailed Turkey journalists]]>
Five top figures from the newspaper, which has been deeply critical of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, remain in custody, though the remainder are now free while on trial.

In a case that has caused an international outcry, the staff members are charged with supporting in their coverage three groups that Turkey considers terror groups.

These are the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), the ultra-left Revolutionary People's Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C), and the movement of Fethullah Gulen, the US-based preacher whom Ankara accuses of ordering last year's coup attempt.

The Turkish government calls the movement the Fethullah Terror Group (FETO).

Supporters of the paper say it has always taken a tough line against the three organisations and is being punished for being one of the few opposition voices in the Turkish media.

"I worked with them. I know their past. These colleagues cannot be terrorists, those friends cannot be FETO," defence witness Alev Coskun, a board member of the Cumhuriyet foundation and influential writer, told the court.

He also pointed to tensions at the newspaper under the editorship of Can Dundar, who in 2015 broke an explosive story claiming Turkey was sending arms to Syria, and who now lives in exile in Germany.

"This is a serious newspaper. It is not a newspaper where Can Dundar played games," Coskun said.

The staff members still in custody include some of the biggest names in Turkish journalism, and the court has so far resisted pressure to free them.

The paper's chairman Akin Atalay, influential columnist Kadri Gursel and editor-in-chief Murat Sabuncu have been held behind bars for 330 days.

Investigative reporter Ahmet Sik, who wrote a book exposing the past ties of members of the Turkish elite to the Gulen movement, has been held for 269 days, and accountant Emre Iper for 173 days.

Earlier, a group of around 200 people gathered outside the Istanbul courthouse, carrying portraits of the journalists and banners with slogans "freedom for journalists" and "independent press cannot be silenced".

According to the P24 press freedom group, there are 171 journalists behind bars in Turkey, most of whom were arrested under the state of emergency imposed after the coup attempt on July 15, 2016.

The country ranks 155 out of 180 on the latest world press freedom index by Reporters Without Borders.]]>
9/25/2017 10:22:11 PM
<![CDATA[Fabregas praises Costa ]]>
“In recent years there has not been a pure striker better than him; he understood my game, read my passes and most importantly he could score from them,” Fabregas told press on Monday.

Fabregas added, “With Diego, it is not just what he gives you on the pitch, but it is his character, too; he brings a lot to the group."

Costa will not be able to play with Atletico Madrid till January, as FIFA banned the club from signing players this summer.

Fabregas, 30, commented on Costa’s situation, saying, “Diego knew that if he signed for Atletico, he could not play for a few months. It has been a difficult situation for both him and for Chelsea; it has been wrong."

It is good to mention that Costa, 28, left Chelsea to rejoin his former club, Atletico Madrid, after he had troubles with Chelsea’s current coach, Antonio Conte.
9/25/2017 10:19:26 PM
<![CDATA[Efteksat to inaugurate International Cairo Jazz Festival ]]>
Eftekasat is an Egyptian Oriental jazz band that was established in late 2001 and gave its debut performance in February 2002 at the Cairo Jazz Club. With three albums, two awards and several TV shows under their belt, the band spends their time between playing at Saturday Nightlife Arabia and performing at various Egyptian venues and around the globe, Eftekasat’s Facebook page reported.

The 9th Cairo International Jazz Festival edition will kick off on September 28 for four days.

A number of Egyptian artists will participate in the festival, such as Watson Blues, Shereen Abdo “Jazz Me”, and Wave Jazz Band.

In addition, international artists will participate in the festival as well, such as Mathias Heise Quadrillion from Denmark, Kapok from Netherlands, Netnakisum from Austria, Tomas Liska ''Invisible World'' from Czech Republic, Ichiro Onoe Trio from Japan and MN' Jam Experiment from Portugal.

There are nine countries participating in the festival this year: Egypt, Denmark, Austria, Holland, Portugal, Panama, Japan and the Czech Republic.
9/25/2017 10:05:45 PM
<![CDATA[N. Korea says U.S. 'declared war,' warns it could shoot down U.S. bombers]]>
Ri Yong Ho said a Twitter message by Trump on Saturday in which the president warned that the minister and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un "won't be around much longer" if they acted on their threats amounted to a declaration of war.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Saunders on Monday denied the United States had declared war, calling the suggestion "absurd".

Speaking earlier in New York, where he had been attending the annual U.N. General Assembly, Ri told reporters: "The whole world should clearly remember it was the U.S. who first declared war on our country."

"Since the United States declared war on our country, we will have every right to make countermeasures, including the right to shoot down United States strategic bombers even when they are not inside the airspace border of our country.

"The question of who won't be around much longer will be answered then," Ri added.

On Saturday, U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer bombers escorted by fighters flew in international airspace over waters east of North Korea in a show of force after a heated exchange of rhetoric between Trump and Kim over North Korea's nuclear and missile programs.

The Pentagon said the flight was the farthest north of the demilitarized zone separating North and South Korea that any U.S. fighter jet or bomber has flown in the 21st century.

"That operation was conducted in international airspace, over international waters, so we have the right to fly, sail and operate where legally permissible around the globe," Pentagon spokesman Colonel Robert Manning said on Monday.

North Korea, which has remained technically at war with the United States since the 1950-53 Korean War ended in a truce and not a peace treaty, has been working to develop nuclear-tipped missiles capable of hitting the U.S. mainland and conducted its sixth and largest nuclear test this month.


Pyongyang accuses the United States, which has 28,500 troops in South Korea, of planning to invade and regularly threatens to destroy it and its Asian allies.

However, the recent spike in rhetoric from both sides has fuelled tensions and raised fears of miscalculation by one side or the other that could have massive repercussions.

U.S. Treasury yields fell to session lows after Ri's comments on Monday.

The Pentagon said the bomber flight indicated the range of military options available to Trump, but U.S. officials have repeatedly stressed that despite the war of words, the administration prefers a negotiated solution to the crisis.

A defense expert, Bruce Bennett of the Rand Corp think tank, said North Korea would have difficulties shooting down a U.S. bomber with missiles or fighter planes given its limited capabilities, and if it tried and failed, would appear weak.

"It is unlikely to take such a risk," he said. "So this sounds like another attempt by North Korea to 'deter by bluster' U.S. actions the regime does not like."

The latest round of heavy verbal salvoes began when Trump threatened in his maiden U.N. address last Tuesday to "totally destroy" North Korea, a country of 26 million people, if it threatened the United States or its allies.

In an unprecedented direct statement on Friday, Kim responded by calling Trump a "mentally deranged U.S. dotard" whom he would tame with fire.

Kim said North Korea would consider the "highest level of hard-line countermeasure in history" against the United States and that Trump's comments had confirmed Pyongyang's nuclear programme was "the correct path".

Ri told the U.N. General Assembly on Saturday that targeting the U.S. mainland with its rockets was inevitable after "Mr Evil President" Trump called Kim a "rocket man" on a suicide mission.

On Twitter late Saturday, Trump replied: "Just heard Foreign Minister of North Korea speak at U.N. If he echoes thoughts of Little Rocket Man, they won't be around much longer!"

On Monday, North Korea, which has pursued its missile and nuclear programs in defiance of international sanctions, said it "bitterly condemned the reckless remarks" of Trump.


United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Monday that the only solution to the crisis was a political one.

"Fiery talk can lead to fatal misunderstandings," U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric told reporters.

China, North Korea's neighbour and main ally, which has nevertheless backed U.N. sanctions over Pyongyang's nuclear program, called on Monday for all sides to show restraint.

"We want things to calm down. It's getting too dangerous and it's in nobody's interest," China's U.N. Ambassador Liu Jieyi told Reuters.

"We certainly hope that (the United States and North Korea) will see that there is no other way than negotiations to solve the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula ... The alternative is a disaster."

In Beijing, China's Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang described the situation as highly complex and sensitive. He said it was vitally important that everyone strictly, fully and correctly implement all North Korea-related U.N. resolutions, which call for both tighter sanctions and efforts to resume dialogue.

Speaking to British Prime Minister Theresa May by telephone, Chinese President Xi Jinping repeated Beijing's position that the North Korean issue should be resolved peacefully via talks and hoped Britain could play a constructive role in pushing for this, Chinese state media said.

Downing Street said the two leaders agreed there was a particular responsibility for China and Britain, as permanent Security Council members, to help find a diplomatic solution.

Ri warned on Friday that North Korea might test a hydrogen bomb over the Pacific Ocean, in what would be North Korea's first atmospheric nuclear test. Experts said such a move, while perhaps not imminent, would be proof of North Korea's ability to successfully deliver a nuclear warhead on a missile.]]>
9/25/2017 10:04:34 PM
<![CDATA[Mathieu insults Barcelona board]]>
When asked about how he would celebrate if he scored against Barcelona, Mathieu answered, “I don't know. I have a lot of respect for my ex-teammates and the fans. If I celebrate, it will be because of [club president] Josep Maria Bartomeu and [technical secretary] Robert Fernandez, because I think the way they treated me was very harsh."

Mathieu, 33 years old, joined Barcelona in 2014 and stayed three years with the club, where he won many titles before leaving the club this summer to join Sporting Lisbon.

Mathieu spoke about his time in Barcelona, saying, “I played a lot; I won titles; and the only sad thing is that people say I did not play a lot. In my first season, I played 58 percent of games and scored important goals; in the second I played less, say 53-54 percent, which is also not bad, and in the final year it was difficult with the injuries and the lack of confidence from the coach, but that's the way it was."

Mathieu won many titles with Barcelona. He won two Spanish League titles, three Spanish Cup titles and the 2015 UEFA Champions League title.
9/25/2017 10:03:21 PM
<![CDATA[Chelsea Manning barred from entering Canada]]>
Manning wrote on Twitter that "i guess canada has permanently banned me," posting an image of a document that described why she was denied entry.

The document said that Manning had committed a crime outside the country that "would equate to an indictable offense, namely treason" in Canada and which carries a maximum sentence of 14 years imprisonment.

Committing a crime elsewhere that would carry a maximum sentence of at least 10 years in Canada is grounds for a person to be denied entry, the document said.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau declined to comment "on any specific case" at a news conference, and said he looked "forward to seeing more details about this situation."

Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison in 2013 for leaking more than 700,000 classified documents to WikiLeaks three years earlier, when she was known as Bradley.

She served seven years, and twice tried to take her own life last year alone, before then-president Barack Obama commuted her sentence just days before he left office in January.

Manning was released from Fort Leavenworth's all-male prison in May.

During her incarceration, Manning battled for -- and won -- the right to start hormone treatment. She now has cropped blonde hair and a decidedly feminine look.]]>
9/25/2017 10:02:15 PM
<![CDATA[Interpol sting seizes $51 million in fake drugs]]>
Dietary supplements, pain killers, fake contact lenses, epilepsy medication and 1.2 tonnes of erectile dysfunction pills were among the drugs seized, the agency, based in Lyon, France, said in a statement.

Operation Pangea X was carried out by police, customs and health authorities across a record 123 countries and led to more than 400 arrests from September 12 to 19.

The illegal sale of medicine online was also targeted, with 3,584 websites shut down and more than 3,000 online advertisements suspended.

It was the first time many African countries participated in the operation, said Immanuel Sam, the head of Interpol's Namibia office.

"The sale of fake or counterfeit pharmaceuticals is a growing concern across Africa, as it creates a dangerous situation for the health of unsuspecting consumers," Sam said.

As opioid abuse has reached epidemic proportions in several countries, the operation also targeted the trade of painkillers, particularly the drug Fentanyl.

Numerous websites selling only the drug were closed down, including one called "Where to buy Fentanyl without a prescription".

Operation Pangea was launched in 2008 and has since tracked the rise of unauthorised websites selling pharmaceutical products.

"Criminals are exploiting this trend to make a profit, putting lives at risk," said Tim Morris, Interpol's executive director of police services.

"The fact that we still see such strong outcomes after 10 years of Pangea operations demonstrates how the online sale of illicit medicines is an ongoing, and ever increasing, challenge," he said.]]>
9/25/2017 10:00:36 PM
<![CDATA[Khalid Ali imprisoned for Violating Public Morals]]>CAIRO - 25 September 2017: Former Egyptian presidential candidate Khaled Ali was given a jail term on charges of violating public morals.

Giza Misdemeanors Court sentenced Khaled Ali, the founder of the Bread and Freedom Party, to three months in prison and LE 1,000 ($56.70) on charges of committing an act of "public indecency", after he made an obscene remark while participating in a demonstration outside the State Council.

The court, headed by Judge Ahmed Abdel Jayed, adjourned the hearing to listen to the defense. The defendant’s lawyer requested that the president of Giza Misdemeanors Court delegate the tripartite committee responsible for preparing the technical report to examine the photographs and videos on which the case is based.

The court has earlier demanded an expert from the Radio & Television Union to submit a report on the video footage evidence, which shows Ali making inappropriate hand gestures that “violate public morals” during the said protest earlier this year.
9/25/2017 9:58:53 PM
<![CDATA[Foo Fighters top Billboard, K-Pop's BTS scores huge U.S. debut]]>
"Concrete and Gold" sold some 127,000 units for the week, figures from Nielsen Soundscan show, while BTS debuted in the No.7 spot with its new release, selling some 31,000 copies.

The Billboard 200 chart tallies units from album sales, song sales (10 songs equal one album) and streaming activity (1,500 streams equal one album).

The sales for BTS, a seven-member band formed in South Korea in 2012, marked the biggest U.S. sales week ever in the burgeoning K-Pop genre, and the highest chart position so far for a K-Pop act.

Also known as Bulletproof Boy Scouts and Beyond the Scene, the band won Billboard's award for the top social media artists in May, its first major awards win in the United States.

On the Digital Songs chart, which measures online single sales, U.S. rapper Post Malone's "Rockstar" debuted at No.1 with more than 79,000 units sold, keeping Taylor Swift's "Look What You Made Me Do," in second place.
9/25/2017 9:48:55 PM
<![CDATA[China's U.N. envoy says N.Korea, U.S. rhetoric 'too dangerous']]>
North Korea's Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho told reporters that President Donald Trump had declared war on North Korea and Pyongyang reserves the right to take countermeasures, including shooting down U.S. bombers even if not in its air space.

"We want things to calm down. It's getting too dangerous and it's in nobody's interest," Liu told Reuters. "We certainly hope that (the United States and North Korea) will see that there is no other way than negotiations to solve the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula ... The alternative is a disaster."]]>
9/25/2017 9:13:49 PM
<![CDATA[Wall St falls on N. Korea warnings, tech selloff]]>
North Korea's foreign minister said President Donald Trump had declared war on the country and it reserved the right to take countermeasures, including shooting down U.S. bombers even if they are not in its airspace.

The comments buoyed safe-haven assets, those that are favored by investors in times of crisis, with gold up 0.9 percent and the Japanese yen up 0.30 percent versus the greenback at 111.65 per dollar.

"Everyone’s waiting with a cringe on their face," said Jason Ware, chief investment officer at Albion Financial in Salt Lake City, Utah.

"We don’t want this to continue, to become a war of words and then who knows when a mistake can happen."

The CBOE Volatility index, a widely followed measure of market anxiety, hit a 2-week high of 11.21 and was last up 1.12 points at 10.71.

Tech names such as Facebook, off 4.81 percent, Microsoft, down 1.89 percent, and Apple, off 1.11 percent, were among the biggest drags on the benchmark S&P 500 index.

The S&P technology index slid 1.76 percent and was on track for its worst daily performance in five weeks. The index remains the best performing of the 11 major S&P sectors this year, however, with a rise of nearly 23 percent.

The losses in tech were offset somewhat by a sharp climb in the energy sector, which gained 1.56 percent. The sector was on track for its sixteenth gain in the last 18 sessions.

Oil prices hit a more than two-year high on Monday after major producers said the global market was on its way towards rebalancing, while Turkey threatened to cut oil flows from Iraq's Kurdistan region toward its ports.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 65.31 points, or 0.29 percent, to 22,284.28, the S&P 500 lost 9.42 points, or 0.38 percent, to 2,492.8 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 74.19 points, or 1.15 percent, to 6,352.73.

Genuine Parts shares jumped 6.28 percent as the best performer on the S&P 500 after the car parts distributor said it would enter the European market with a deal to buy peer Alliance Automotive Group for about $2 billion.

Allergan was up 2.15 percent after the drugmaker authorized a $2 billion buyback of its shares and said its chief financial officer would retire.

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a 1.22-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 1.31-to-1 ratio favored decliners.]]>
9/25/2017 9:00:45 PM
<![CDATA[Top U.S. NAFTA negotiator sees no problem with pace of talks]]>
Officials from the United States, Mexico and Canada are in Ottawa for the third of seven planned rounds of talks. The U.S. delegation has yet to unveil its precise position on several points, prompting concerns the process to update the 1994 pact could drag on beyond the scheduled end-December finish.

"We've been working very hard so I don't see a problem," John Melle told reporters when pressed on the matter. "We're moving across the board, so it's very ambitious."

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau earlier predicted some tough days ahead for negotiators and declined to say whether he thought the talks could meet the deadline.

"The negotiations are still under way and of course there will be more difficult discussions in some cases than others," he told a Toronto news conference.

Asked whether he was concerned the talks might not end on schedule, he replied: "The negotiations move forward at a certain pace and we respect that reality."

U.S. President Donald Trump, who frequently describes the treaty as a disaster, is threatening to walk away unless major changes are made.

Canada's chief negotiator on Sunday said he did not expect the U.S. side to present detailed proposals in Ottawa on major issues such as dispute settlement, the dairy sector and tougher rules for North American content on autos.

Canadian officials say it is still possible to meet the year-end deadline although they concede there are significant uncertainties about the timetable.

Earlier this month, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said the negotiators were working at warp speed.

"I think that's accurate," said Melle.

Trudeau said Ottawa's team of officials was "moving forward in good faith" and repeated a promise to defend Canada's system of tariffs and import restrictions put in place to defend its domestic dairy sector. The U.S. industry dislikes the measures.

Kenneth Smith, Mexico's chief negotiator, told reporters late on Sunday that "we feel there is a positive environment in the negotiations."

Lighthizer, Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland and Mexican Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo - the three top officials driving the NAFTA modernization - will meet in Ottawa on Tuesday and Wednesday, the last two days of the third round.]]>
9/25/2017 8:58:48 PM
<![CDATA[Notion U.S. has declared war on N. Korea is "absurd," W. House]]>
"We've not declared war on North Korea. Frankly, the suggestion of that is absurd," White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told reporters.]]>
9/25/2017 8:50:09 PM
<![CDATA[U.S. Court cancels arguments on previous Trump travel ban]]>
The Court acted after the White House announced on Sunday it was replacing the temporary executive order with a more tailored ban on eight countries that legal experts said could be harder to fight in court than the prior ban.

The justices ordered further briefing on whether the new presidential proclamation, which indefinitely restricts travel from Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Chad and North Korea, would render the prior case moot. Sunday's order also bars certain government officials from Venezuela.

The new ban is Trump's third.

Trump's March 6 temporary travel ban, which replaced another ban from January and expired on Sunday, targeted six Muslim-majority countries. It sparked international outrage and was quickly blocked by federal courts as unconstitutional discrimination or a violation of immigration law.

In June, the U.S. Supreme Court allowed a limited version of the ban to go ahead while the justices examined its legality. It was preparing to hear arguments on Oct. 10, before removing the case from its schedule on Monday.

The Sunday proclamation could be less vulnerable to legal attack, scholars and other experts said, because it is the result of a months-long analysis of foreign vetting procedures by U.S. officials. It also might be less easily tied to Trump's campaign-trail statements some courts viewed as biased against Muslims.

"The greater the sense that the policy reflects a considered, expert judgment, the less the temptation (by courts) to second-guess the executive," said Saikrishna Prakash, a professor at the University of Virginia School of Law, in an email. "It looks less like a matter of prejudice or a desire to fulfill a campaign promise."

In 2016, more than 72,000 nonimmigrant and immigrant visas were issued to the countries covered by the new ban, excluding Venezuela, with nearly half of those going to Iran. The new ban provides some exemptions for Iranians with valid student visas. Only nine North Koreans immigrated to the United States in 2016 and 100 were granted nonimmigrant visas.

The new ban is set to go into effect on Oct. 18, but it already applies to five of the six countries covered by the March 6 ban, according to a U.S. State Department cable issued on Sunday and obtained by Reuters.

Sudan was dropped from the list of banned countries after the Sudanese government provided information required under the new criteria set out by the Trump administration earlier this year, a White House official said on Monday.]]>
9/25/2017 8:47:00 PM
<![CDATA[European ambassadors to U.S. back Iran nuclear pact]]>
U.S. President Donald Trump is weighing whether the 2015 deal serves U.S. security interests as he faces a mid-October deadline for certifying that Iran is complying with the pact, a decision that could sink an agreement strongly supported by the other world powers that negotiated it.

"We agree that the demise of this agreement would be a major loss," David O'Sullivan, the European Union's envoy in Washington, said at an Atlantic Council panel discussion.

German Ambassador Peter Wittig said anyone advocating walking away should consider "larger issues," including an increased danger Iran would resume enrichment, danger of a nuclear arms race in an unstable region and impact on global nonproliferation efforts.

"What kind of signal would this send to countries like North Korea?" Wittig asked. "It would send a signal that diplomacy is not reliable, that you can't trust diplomatic agreements, and that would affect, I believe, our credibility in the West when we're not honoring an agreement that Iran has not violated."

If Trump does not recertify by Oct. 16, Congress has 60 days to decide whether to reimpose sanctions suspended under the accord.

That would let Congress, which is controlled by Trump's fellow Republicans, effectively decide whether to kill the deal. Although congressional leaders have declined to say whether they would seek to reimpose sanctions, every Republican lawmaker opposed the deal reached by Democratic President Barack Obama's administration.

Many, like Trump, have made opposition to the agreement a campaign issue.

If Washington pulls out of the deal, the ambassadors said they would do everything possible to protect any companies based in Europe that continue to do business with Iran from reimposed U.S. sanctions.

Britain's ambassador, Kim Darroch, said Trump and Prime Minister Theresa May had devoted about half their discussion to Iran when they met in New York last week, although Trump did not reveal his decision.

He said May had explained again why Britain supports the nuclear pact, seeing it as a matter of national security. "As long as the Iranians continue to comply with it, in the view of the IAEA, we will continue to support it," he said, referring to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

French Ambassador Gerard Araud noted that the other countries that signed the pact - Russia, China and Iran - had made clear that they do not support renegotiating.]]>
9/25/2017 8:37:39 PM
<![CDATA[ UAE among top investors in Egypt: Egypt’s Amb. to UAE ]]>
Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi’s visit to the UAE came within the framework of bolstering mutual ties between the countries, as well as the agreement on cooperation and collaboration in many areas of mutual interest, in addition to sharing experiences in economic and commercial fields, Gad told WAM, the UAE news agency.

Gad stated that the mutual relations between the countries are on parallel paths on political, economic and other levels, adding that figures reflect the distinguished mutual economic relations between the two countries.

Gad pointed out that the UAE comes among the top investors in Egypt, as the volume of UAE investments in Egypt is approximately $6.2 billion. In addition, the mutual commercial exchange has reached $3.3 billion, with Egyptian exports of $2.4 billion and UAE exports of $900 million, attesting to the depth of the countries’ economic and commercial relations.

The Egyptian-Emirati cultural path involves strong and powerful bases that open doors for further integration and cooperation between the countries.]]>
9/25/2017 8:35:59 PM
<![CDATA[Iraq hangs 42 Sunni militants convicted of terrorism]]>
The biggest mass execution this year in Iraq came after the government came after Sunni suicide attacks killed at least 60 people near the southern city of Nassiriya, a Shi'ite area, on Sept. 14, prompting Shi'ite demands for tougher judicial action.

The Justice Ministry said the 42 had been hanged at a prison in Nassiriya, three months after 14 other militants were executed following convictions for terrorism.

Islamic State claimed responsibility for three suicide attacks targeting restaurants and a security checkpoint near Nassiriya. Relatives of victims were invited to witness Sunday's executions, the justice ministry said.

"Despite all the pain inside me after losing my two brothers in the suicide attacks, when I saw the terrorists dangling from the rope I felt relief," said Fadhil Abdul Ameer from Nassiriya.

Islamic State's self-declared caliphate, declared in 2014 after it captured wide areas of northern and western Iraq, effectively collapsed in July when U.S.-backed Iraqi forces captured Mosul, the group's de facto capital in Iraq.

But recent deadly bomb attacks in Baghdad and other cities show the jihadists remain capable of guerrilla-style warfare, a tactical shift away from seeking territorial conquest.]]>
9/25/2017 8:30:11 PM
<![CDATA[4 sentenced to death after burning Agouza's nightclub]]>
Earlier, the Public Prosecution referred the defendants to the Criminal Court by the end of interrogations.]]>
9/25/2017 8:16:05 PM
<![CDATA[Guardiola praises Aguero]]>
“Sergio is in no doubt one of the best strikers in the world. I hope as soon as possible he can achieve that record so at least we stop talking about that. I am pretty sure that in the next game it is going to happen," Guardiola told press on Monday.

Guardiola added, “Last game, again, he scored a goal and had two or three chances more, so that is essential for a striker – that you have (chances).”

Sergio Aguero booked a starting position in Manchester City’s line-up with a stunning performance this season. He scored six goals to share the Premier League “top scorers” with Romelu Lukaku and Alvaro Morata.

Aguero, 29 years old, joined Manchester City in 2011 from Spanish club Atletico Madrid. He managed to score 176 goals in all competitions, including 128 goals in the League, according to Premierleague.com.

It is good to mention that Eric Brook is the current top goal scorer in Manchester City’s history, with 177 goals.]]>
9/25/2017 7:59:16 PM
<![CDATA[New zip line game in Egypt]]>
Photo 1: Climbing the mountain

Photo 2: Flying down the mountain

Today it is possible to experience zip lining yourself and a host of other rope sports in Al Mokattam district around an old church carved inside Mokattam Mountain. The man running these rope games is Mario, a Canadian man who moved to Egypt 25 years ago.

High ropes are ropes of three levels, from the highest to lowest, embedded into the mountain. The space itself is ideal for photography and to enjoy fun physical activities with your friends.

First-timers should start with the lowest ropes, where tickets cost LE 20 ($1.13).

photo 8 : Flying down the mountain

If you are braver, the high ropes provide a breathtaking view of the mountains for the same cost.

photo 3: High ropes tied to Al-Mokatam

photo 4 : People playing zip line in Egypt

The highlight of the day of course is the zip line down the mountain from its highest peak. The zip line will fly you through the air until you arrive safely at the park below. Tickets cost LE 50.

photo 5 : Climbing the mountain

Photo 6 : Youth walking from the one side to other over of the mountain

If you want to see Cairo from a bird’s eye view, put on your sportswear and go on an unforgettable experience.

Photo 7 : Doing low rope game ]]>
9/25/2017 7:41:44 PM
<![CDATA[Al Hilal prepares for Persepolis clash in Abu Dhabi ]]>
Al Hilal chose Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium to host the decisive game.The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) decided to move the games and clubs from Saudi Arabia and Iran to neutral venues.

Al Hilal players will not miss their fans, because Al Hilal fans are expected to travel to the UAE to support the club, along with the expected support from Emirati fans.

Al Hilal played alongside Persepolis at the group stage. They played two matches, both of which ended in a draw.

Al Hilal depends on a massive attacking scheme consisting of Omar Kharbin, Carlos Eduard and Nicolas Milessi, while the team will miss Nawaf El Abed due to an injury.

It is good to mention that the second leg is scheduled for October 17 at Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex in Muscat, Oman.]]>
9/25/2017 7:20:35 PM
<![CDATA[El Gouna Film Festival day 4 recap]]>


continues to publish its packed schedule for the festival’s fourth day, including film screenings, on ground interviews and panel discussions, according to a GFF press release.

The film screenings include “Brimstone & Glory”, which revolves around a pyrotechnic festival in Mexico and explores rituals and the beauty of fireworks. The screenings also include “Manifesto” by Julian Rosefeldt, which depicts the artistic beauty of an artistic manifesto and redefines the role of today’s artists.

Other screenings include “Soufra”, which portrays life in a refugee camp in Lebanon. The Egyptian film “Photocopy” by Tamer Ashryalso premiered at the Marina Theater in El Gouna.

The cast of all films will be available for on the ground interviews on Tuesday.

A panel discussion was also carried out Monday at Audimax Theater, led by UNHCR about humanity. The panel discussed the consequences of climate change and supported the presented argument with two films, entitled “Chasing Coral” and “An Inconvenient Sequel”.

The discussion will further elucidate the issue of climate change and the future of corals, highlighting the method of storytelling as the most effective tool for conservation and tackling global environments, the statement read.

Emerging Arab and Egyptian filmmakers geared up to participate in the first anticipated edition of El Gouna Film Festival (GFF), which is running between September 22 and September 29 at El Gouna in Hurghada.

Sponsored by the Egyptian Culture Ministry and Egyptian Tourism Authority, GFF seeks to foster different cinematic voices and generate opportunities to further develop creativity in the MENA region.]]>
9/25/2017 7:07:30 PM
<![CDATA[Palestinians hold rally expressing gratitude to Egypt]]>
Fatah’s Central Committee (the highest decision-making body of the Palestinian Authority) praised Egypt’s efforts in inter-Palestinian reconciliation on Saturday.

Last week, Hamas dissolved its administrative committee in the Gaza strip, invited the government of national reconciliation to assume its duties and hold general elections, as per the 2011 Cairo Agreement between Fatah and Hamas, which aimed to unify the Palestinian disputed parties. Hamas’ decision came following indirect inter-Palestinian talks, brokered by Egypt.

The committee, presided over by Palestinian Mahmoud Abbas, stated that Hamas has good faith in fulfilling the Cairo Agreement, inviting the new reconciliation government to head to the Gaza strip to take on its duties.

The committee’s comments came in a meeting held on Saturday to discuss the outcomes of President Mahmoud Abbas’ participation in the 72nd round of the United Nations General Assembly meeting in New York. The meeting tackled the possible ways of reviving the peace process between the Palestinians and Israelis, which was called for by President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi.

On the sidelines of the UNGA meetings at his residency, Sisi held two separate meetings with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at New York, to discuss ways of resuming the peace process talks that had been halted since 2014.

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9/25/2017 7:06:14 PM
<![CDATA[Will Smith turns 49]]>
The successful actor/rapper was born on September 25, 1968, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. At the age of 16, he met Jeff Townes (DJ Jazzy). Townes and Smith launched a highly successful rap career as DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince. They became quite popular after they produced songs called “Summertime” and “Parents Just Don't Understand.”

Since "Men in Black," Smith has gone on to receive Oscar nominations for Best Actor for "Ali" (2001) and "The Pursuit of Happiness." He also has a total of four Grammys in rap performance categories.

He took a career hiatus between 2008 and 2012. Last year, he was seen in "Suicide Squad" and "Collateral Beauty," and he will be re-teaming with "Suicide Squad" director David Ayer for "Bright," which comes out this December.]]>
9/25/2017 7:04:56 PM
<![CDATA[‘To Build It’: Public campaign demands Sisi run for 2nd term]]>

“As founders, we ascertained President Sisi’s loyalty and his keenness regarding fixing the state’s real problems, including the economic situation of the country,” the statement read. It added that Sisi didn’t let the possibility of losing part of his popularity among Egyptians stand in his way when he announced the economic reform program.

“He risked everything and stood strong while taking several historical, fateful decisions, trusting that Egyptians will understand the reasons behind them,” the "To Build It" campaign stated in its first statement.

Ahmed Al-Kahteeb, one of the campaign’s founders, said in his speech that everything started with a Facebook page he created. Shortly, several people tried to contact the page founders asking about the idea and expressing their wish and will to volunteer with them.


“That’s why the page turned into a public campaign that aims to reach Sisi and tell him that there are several Egyptians wanting him to run for a second presidential term to get the chance of finishing what he started in 2014,” Kahteeb said.

“Several reasons led us to announce our campaign publicly here today, including Sisi’s strategic perspective in dealing with a number of sensitive files,” Kahteeb said, explaining more about "To Build It."


“He [Sisi] was aware of the importance of the social justices’ file and put it as a priority. He stood firmly in the face of corruption and paid huge attention to women’s role within the society,” the campaign’s statement added.

High board announced, volunteers needed

During the conference, the campaign announced choosing six of the founding members to form the High Board, as they announced one of them as their official spokesperson.

The board was announced to include Ahmed Al-Kahteeb, Kareem Salim, Hazem Tawfeq, Ahmed Badwi, Mohamed Shabaan and Mohamed el-Garhi.


Kareem Salim, another founder of the campaign said that they are in need of a number of volunteers all over the country, and that all needed forms will be available through their Facebook page as soon as possible.

Furthermore, it was added that a signature campaign will be lunched soon. “We are going to collect signatures from all around the state, aiming to convince President Sisi that there is a huge number of Egyptians wanting him to run again,” Salim said.


Abdel Fatah al-Sisi is the sixth president of Egypt. He came to office on June 2014 after the revolution of June 30, which toppled former President Mohamed Morsi, who is affiliated with the now-banned Muslim Brotherhood.
9/25/2017 7:03:41 PM
<![CDATA[Referendum is not an independence declaration: Kurdistan FM]]>
Falah told Egypt Today that he is “proud and privileged to vote YES in today's historic referendum on Kurdistan's independence.”

“It is an unforgettable moment in my life,” Falah added a few minutes after casting his YES vote.

Regarding escalations taken by neighboring countries such as Turkey and Iran, Falah stressed that “this is a domestic issue between Erbil and Baghdad. Some countries have overreacted to our domestic affairs.”

“The referendum is not a declaration of independence; it is just a beginning to start the independence process,” Falah explained.

Falah pointed out that the approval of the referendum “represents a mandate from the Kurdistan people to KRG to go forward with negotiations with the Baghdad government.”

Voting in the historic referendum kicked off Monday morning in northern Iraq, where millions of Kurds are determined to vote for independence despite international demands to call it off and fears of violence and instability.

A war of words has continued since the Kurdish independence referendum was set; however, in the past few weeks, the rhetoric has intensified as it became increasingly likely that the referendum would take place.

On Monday, Iraqi Kurds decide for themselves. The results of the referendum are expected to be announced within 72 hours following the end of the vote.]]>
9/25/2017 7:01:25 PM
<![CDATA[Business news wrap-up]]>New cities, SCZone, infrastructure key focus of UK firms: Trade envoy
The United Kingdom is encouraging its investors to invest in the Suez Canal Economic Zone (SCZone) in the planning.

Egypt inks 83 oil, gas deals with foreign firms in 4 yrs: Molla

Egypt has all the potential to become an energy hub, and exerts great efforts to develop this potential, in order to enable countries to rely on Egypt, Mola said.

Egypt to pay $5.2B to Afreximbank before end of December: CBE

Repaying the bank’s dues will highly contribute to decreasing the foreign liabilities, CBE Governor said.

UAE investments in Egypt improve, trade balance post surplus

Kabil made the statement as he headed to Abu Dhabi Monday morning, along with President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi.

Egypt considers renewing Iraqi crude deal

Under an agreement reached in April in Baghdad, 12 million barrels of oil shipments are to be delivered to Egypt from SOMO.

EGX ends on mixed note for 3rd session, benchmark up 0.5%

Market capitalization gained LE 2.36 billion ($133.5 million) to LE 735.66 billion, up from 733.3 billion Sunday.

AMOC targets LE 1.1B profits in FY2017/18: Chairman

AMOC is waiting for the approval of the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) to buy condensates from the UAE’s Dana Gas, the chairman said.

HOTAC posts LE 509.6M, Banazioun gains LE 50M profits in FY16/17

Holding Company for Tourism and Hotels’ (HOTAC) subsidiaries achieved LE 509.62 million profits in the fiscal year of 2016/2017.

U.S. exchange rate stable Monday

The U.S. dollar recorded LE 17.617 for buying and LE 17.717 for selling.

ABB buys GE business for $2.6 billion in bet it can boost margins

Power grids maker ABB is buying General Electric’s Industrial Solutions business for $2.6 billion in a bet it can improve the division’s lackluster margins.

UAE's oil supply cut compliance is 100 percent: energy minister

The United Arab Emirates energy minister said the country’s compliance with a pact on global oil supply cuts stood at 100 percent.

Robust oil may support Saudi petchems, region may follow Asia's downtrend

The Saudi stock index may rise on Monday, after being shut for a national holiday on the previous day.
9/25/2017 6:58:41 PM
<![CDATA[Ex-U.S. Rep. Weiner sentenced to 21 months in teen 'sexting' case]]>
Weiner, 53, started to cry as soon as the sentence was announced by U.S. District Judge Denise Cote in Manhattan. He pleaded guilty in May to transferring obscene messages to a minor, and agreed he would not appeal any sentence of 27 months or less.

“I was a very sick man for a very long time, but I‘m also responsible for the damage I have done,” Weiner said in court before he was sentenced. He said he was being treated, and asked Cote to spare him prison and sentence him to probation so he could continue treatment.

Cote said she believed Weiner was suffering from an addiction, and was serious about being treated. However, she said it was important to impose a sentence that would deter others from committing similar crimes.

“There is the opportunity to make a statement that could protect other minors,” she said.

Weiner declined to speak to reporters as he left the courtroom. He will surrender on Nov. 6.

The investigation into Weiner’s exchanges with a North Carolina high school student roiled the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign in its final days, when authorities found emails on Weiner’s laptop from his wife Huma Abedin, an aide to Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Abedin has filed for divorce. Weiner wore his wedding band at the sentencing.

The discovery of the emails prompted James Comey, then director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, to announce in late October that the agency was reopening its investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server while she was U.S. secretary of state.

Clinton has said the announcement contributed to her upset loss to Republican Donald Trump, who had accused her of endangering national security by using the private server.

President Trump fired Comey in May amid the FBI’s probe into whether his campaign colluded with Russia to defeat Clinton, a claim the president has denied.

Weiner represented parts of New York City in the U.S. House of Representatives for 12 years before resigning in 2011, after it emerged that he had exchanged sexually explicit messages with adult women.

In 2013, Weiner ran for New York City mayor, but dropped out of the race when more lewd messages became public.]]>
9/25/2017 6:01:36 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt calls for upgrading accreditation system to ease African inter-trade movement]]>
Accreditation is also an important factor in supporting exports, said CEO of the Egyptian Accreditation Council (EGAC) Hany el Dessouqi in a speech Monday on behalf of Qabil in the inaugural session of the General Assembly of the African Accreditation Cooperation (AFRAC), currently taking place here.

He pressed for activating the role played by AFRAC with the aim to enrich the economic system and trade exchange.

Dessouqi said the Trade and Industry Ministry adopts a clear strategy to support Egyptian products and hone their competitiveness.

The Ministry has restructured its national quality system and has established a national council to guarantee industrial quality, he added]]>
9/25/2017 5:59:36 PM
<![CDATA[World's third biggest container ship transit Suez Canal]]>
The ship, which came from France through the Mediterranean with a 218-ton load, will head to the Red Sea and the United Arab Emirates afterwards, said a navigational source.

The ship was escorted by a tug boat during the crossing period which lasted for bout 10 hours, added the source, pointing out to the increase of the number of ships in canal following the success of the New Suez Canal.
9/25/2017 5:58:32 PM
<![CDATA[Ruth Stevens: GFF is a step forward for Egyptian independent films]]>
Stevens optimistically spoke about the anticipated results of the workshops and film screenings, claiming that the workshops have a major role in scriptwriting, and encourages filmmakers and producers to deliver more artistic productions.

“We have been talking with the GFF board including filmmaker Amir Ramses, director of CineGouna, on how to develop the cinema platform in Egypt and encourage filmmakers and producers to accomplish more productions, and I am really pleased to say that this edition is really very well established and that’s what we attempt to see again in the second edition,” Stevens told Egypt Today.

Stevens explained the process of carrying out the workshops held in the festival, including the master class led by American film director Richard Tanne, and screenwriter Jeff Stockwell, about filmmaking production.

“We spoke with American screenwriters for many months about incorporating this American film showcase workshop and discussed the type of content that would be most useful in terms of screenwriting, distribution, marketing, and crafting new productions and Cinegouna identified with these goals,” said Stevens.

She pointed out that American showcases are greatly experienced in scriptwriting, adding that that rhetoric is internationally recognized. The organizers felt that scriptwriting needs to be presented in the festival through workshops. Mentors of the workshop were able to teach young scriptwriters the process of refining their scripts, including spotting issues in scenarios and retouching content.

Filmmakers today are not only challenged in producing a rich script, but are also required to find distribution channels that would meet their demands of reaching out to the public while supporting their artistic productions. Stevens emphasizes the difference between distribution channels from one country to another.

“Distribution channels tend to be different from country to country. We have previously done a workshop with a partner called Global Media Makers last spring that focused on the distribution of independent films,” Stevens mentioned.

She also added that the distribution channels of independent films in Egypt and the U.S. are similar to each other than those of other countries; whereas the distribution of commercial films is different.

GFF is a depiction of the full experience of the filmmaking process, thus not only operating as a networking platform but also providing deep insights on aspects of the film industry and the required effort for development.

“I think the workshops continue to play a significant role in GFF, because of the bravery it takes as a filmmaker to carry out these workshops, and sharing experience in directing and other aspects of the film industry, while also attempting to assess the delivered scripts by participants with positive and constructive criticism,” asserted Stevens.

Stevens also affirmed the harmonious interaction between the mentors and trainees, describing it as “comfortable and very professional.”
“We did some work ahead of time to make sure that the presented scripts are translated into English because they were originally either in French or Arabic since they came from Middle Eastern countries, thus making it easy for the mentors to tackle these scripts,” added Stevens.

The workshops were a result of combined efforts applied in reading the scripts, evaluation, and providing feedback. Stevens was also touched when speaking about the scripts, saying “the content is very deep.”

Tanne and Stockwell’s workshops contribute in creating a vast professional network between Egypt and other countries, hence adding to the Egyptian film scene. Stevens pointed out that agents of the film scene in Egypt can only develop through practice.

“Getting good in scriptwriting requires some practice and you don’t have to be from some country other than your home in order to master it. You need to practice to get insights of this kind of critical reading, reading others people work, and providing them feedback, and having your work read,” she explained.

She further confirmed that a scriptwriter will take different stances when targeted with criticism and will either develop the script or stand by how it was originally written and justify why he/she wrote it this way.

Stevens highlighted the importance of informal feedback from colleagues, authors, other scriptwriters, and playwrights in inspiring the creation of new ideas.

When asked about her opinion on El Gouna as a place to host an international festival, Stevens acknowledged the place’s beauty and the well-established organization of the festival saying the “organizers have done a phenomenal job.”

The Egyptian cinema scene has been one of the oldest artistic platforms that seized to exist in the MENA region and has managed to produce an ambitious variety of film works. Stevens confirms the variety of films in the scene and mentioned that the scene has room to boost independent films, as she bet that"Sheikh Jackson," which was directed by Amr Salama, would become more successful.

“I think 'Sheikh Jackson' says a lot about Egyptian society and the fact that you could tell a story like that on screen and still receive amazing reviews; and I think it is wonderful that its part of Egypt and available for the world to see,” Stevens excitingly confirmed.

Stevens described her “amazement” towards the GFF board, which she believes are thinking about the next generation of filmmakers and supporting the rise of independent films. The festival is adding up to this support through the commentary feedback received from producers and directors; however, she mentioned that the drawback of GFF is that it is not open to a wider public due to its location.

Running under an ambitious slogan; “Cinema for Humanity,” the GFF played a role in shedding light on human issues through films that tell stories with the aim of openning the minds of the viewers; a hard task to implement through actual reporting, according to Stevens.

The American Embassy’s Cultural Attache concluded the interview stating that the festival is meant to meet international standards. The embassy is currently discussing whether it will partake in the second edition next year or if another international mission would be interested in joining.

Interviewed by: Hanan Fayed, Angy Essam, Nour Eltigani
Transcribed and Written by: Fatma Khaled
9/25/2017 5:56:01 PM
<![CDATA[Bahrain prepares legal file against Qatar]]>
Sheikh Khalid, however, refused to unveil the content of that file or “how it will be used,” confirming the measure announced by Bahraini parliament members a few weeks ago. Their plan is to sue Qatar in the International Criminal Court (ICC).

The minister explained, “Qatar for the last couple of decades has had relations with subversive groups, especially with those living in London. They paid their salaries, and when we opened up and allowed many people to come back after His Majesty’s (King Hamad bin Issa Al Khalifa) reforms, they kept that relationship with them. Doha was in cahoots with many of them, and it was very clear in 2011. We see it all — financing, telling them what to do, and we have all the evidence."

The quartet – Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain – cut diplomatic ties with Qatar on June 5 for supporting terror and terrorist groups.
9/25/2017 5:54:17 PM
<![CDATA[Shaker arrives in Beijing to take part in 2017 GEIDCO forum]]>
During the visits, Shaker will sign the first cooperation protocol between Egypt and GEIDCO in the field of developing electricity and power linkage sectors in Egypt.

The Egyptian minister is set to visit China's control center as well as the headquarters of State Grid company where he will hold talks on developing Egypt's national electricity network.

Shaker is accompanied by Chairman of the Egyptian Electricity Holding Company Gaber Desouky to the three-day forum
9/25/2017 5:37:26 PM
<![CDATA[Remembering cinema legend Khaled Saleh ]]>
Saleh was born in 1964, and he graduated from Faculty of Law. He started acting in university theatres and El Hanager theatre.

Saleh kept working in his business in addition to acting as an amateur until 2000. He decided to start his career as a professional actor when he was 36 years old.

In 2002, he participated in the comic film Keep your Mind Awake [Khaly El Demagh Sahy] with Mostafa Shaaban, Samy El Adl and Dalia Mostafa.

In the same year, he performed a minor role in the Mohamy Khol’ film and found directors pushing to larger and more complicated roles.

His major cinema works include Tito, El Rayes Omar Harb, Ibn El Qonsol, Omaret Yaaqobian, Malaki Eskendereya and El Jazera 2.

Saleh led major roles in a big number of TV series such as Sultan El Gharam, Baa’d El Forak, Tager El Saa’da, El Rayan and Mawee’d Ma’ El Wohosh.

His last film was El Jazera 2 and his last TV Series was Halawet Rouh. He participated in an Anime series called El Rawy.

Dying in 2014 after serious heart problems, Saleh was also popular among other prominent actors in the scene. Actor Khaled El Sawy and actor Ahmed El Sakka were considered Saleh’s best friends and suddenly mourned his death.

Saleh was greatly vibrant for his role in Egyptian film Ahla El Awqat (Best Times) alongside a number of stage plays including Palestine and El Melad. Ahmed Ramy, Film Araby, are some of Radio series that Saleh participated in.]]>
9/25/2017 5:15:31 PM
<![CDATA[North Korea accuses U.S. of declaring war, says can take countermeasures]]>
"The whole world should clearly remember it was the U.S. who first declared war on our country," Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho told reporters in New York.

"Since the United States declared war on our country, we will have every right to make countermeasures, including the right to shoot down United States strategic bombers even when they are not inside the airspace border of our country."

9/25/2017 5:14:12 PM
<![CDATA[UN envoy praises Egypt’s role in Fatah-Hamas agreements]]>
"The recent understandings between Fatah and Hamas would not have taken place without the important role of Egypt and Egyptian officials, and I thank them for what they have done," Mladenov said.

The envoy’s comments were made at a press conference after his visit to the Gaza Strip. Mladenov welcomed Hamas' decision to dissolve the administrative committee and call on the government to carry out its duties in the Gaza Strip. Mladenov deemed the step timely and important to stop the blockade on Gaza Strip.

According to Mladenov, the United Nations discussed a plan with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas that entails that a UN delegation would supervise the assuming of government duties in the Gaza Strip, pointing out that the Palestinians went through 10 years of division, "so it is important not to miss this opportunity."

Last week, Hamas dissolved its administrative committee in the Gaza strip, and invited the government of national reconciliation to assume its duties and hold general elections, as per the 2011 Cairo Agreement between Fatah and Hamas. This was a move aiming to unify the Palestinian disputed parties.

Hamas’ movement came following indirect inter-Palestinian talks, brokered by Egypt. ]]>
9/25/2017 5:02:29 PM

The basic principles behind the collection is using and combining colors as well as disrupting ideas and putting them back together in new ways. An important theme in the collection is the contrast of colors.

They designed six lines of bags which are; CYBILL, AMBE, JAD, CANDIC, LAR and CARLI. Every line has its unique signature and colors.


Etienne Aigner AG is a high fashion house based in Munich, Germany, that specializes in luxury goods such as handbags, luggage, belts, wallets, and leather accessories.

In 1972, the brand was founded in Munich. In 1973, the brand became international, and two years later entered the cosmetics market with a perfume. They designed their first casual wear for men and women in 1978.

The brand is available in 49 countries globally.

9/25/2017 5:01:16 PM
<![CDATA[EFA refuses to host 2018 African Nations Championship ]]>
EFA officials refused CAF’s request to host the championship after it was revoked from Kenya for lack of organization. CAF has given African nations 10 days to apply to host the championship, Super Kora reported.

A member of the board of EFA said that Egypt’s participation in the 2018 Russia World Cup qualifiers was one of the reasons they rejected to host the competition. If Egypt would have to host the 2018 ANC, it would have to stop the Premier League for a month, which would create a crisis for the league and players looking to prove themselves worthy of playing in the national team.

The domestic national has also not qualified to the ANC, after it lost 4-1 to Morocco in the championship’s qualifier.]]>
9/25/2017 4:43:04 PM
<![CDATA[NBC says Sunday night NFL ratings down from last year]]>
NFL teams staged a show of solidarity with protesting players before Sunday's games by kneeling, linking arms or staying off the field during the U.S. national anthem, defying President Donald Trump's call for owners to fire those who refuse to stand.

9/25/2017 4:42:07 PM
<![CDATA[Dubai starts tests in bid to become first city with flying taxis]]>
The flying taxi developed by German drone firm Volocopter resembles a small, two-seater helicopter cabin topped by a wide hoop studded with 18 propellers.

It was unmanned for its test flight.

Meant to run without remote control guidance and with a maximum flight duration of 30 minutes, it comes with plenty of fail-safes in case of trouble: back-up batteries, rotors and, for a worst case scenario, a couple of parachutes.

Volocopter is in a race with more than a dozen well-funded European and U.S. firms, each with its own science fiction-inspired vision for creating a new form of urban transport that is a cross between a driverless electric car and a short-hop, vertical takeoff-and-landing aircraft.

These include aerospace giant Airbus, which aims to put a self-piloting taxi in the air by 2020; Kitty Hawk, a company backed by Google co-founder Larry Page; and Uber, which is working with partners on its own flying taxi strategy.

"We only go public when we can show something that flies," Alexander Zosel, Volocopter's co-founder and chief innovation officer, told Reuters in an interview ahead of the Dubai trial. "We show facts, not visions."

The company performed its maiden test run in a ceremony staged for Dubai Crown Prince Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed.

The UAE has sought to distinguish itself in a region mired in war and strife as a high-tech, forward-looking society.

It plans to send an unmanned probe to Mars by 2021, the Arab world's first mission to space, and Dubai has in many ways led their showy march into the future by introducing the region's first driverless metro and robot policemen prototypes.

"Encouraging innovation and adopting the latest technologies contributes not only to the country’s development but also builds bridges into the future," Sheikh Hamdan said in a statement. ]]>
9/25/2017 4:41:01 PM
<![CDATA["Faisal 11" drills with Saudi Arabia finalized]]>
Commander of the Air Force Air Marshal Younis el Masry and his Saudi counterpart Mohammad Saleh al Otaibi inspected a number of participating forces and listened to a detailed explanation of phases of preparation and planning training activities.

They commended the exceptional performance, efficiency and readiness of all elements that took part in the drill.

Commander el Masry voiced Defense Minister Sedqi Sobhi's greetings for the Saudi forces participating in the drill, saying that the military forces are keen on bolstering cooperation in joint exercises with brotherly and friendly countries and on developing combat abilities of the air forces to be able to protect the Egyptian national security.

He underlined the importance of cooperation to counter terrorism and maintain regional development and stability.

Commander al Otaibi voiced appreciation for joint cooperation and coordination with Egypt's Air Force that had provided all needed potentials to ensure the success of the exercise and achieving planned goals.

He lauded Egypt's efforts aiming to uproot terrorism and its role in maintaining stability and security for the people of the region.]]>
9/25/2017 4:37:48 PM
<![CDATA[Today in History: The death of author Edward Said]]>
He wrote about eastern and western cultural views, Orientalism and the Palestinian case. His efforts opened the gates for many literary theories as post-colonial studies.
Egypt Today gives you a chance to check some important quotes by Said.

“Since the time of Homer, every European, in what he could say about the Orient, was a racist, an imperialist, and almost totally ethnocentric.”

“Until the June 1967 war, I was completely caught up in the life of a young professor of English. Beginning in 1968, I started to think, write, and travel as someone who felt himself to be directly involved in the renaissance of Palestinian life and politics.”
“When you become a public figure, you still think, ‘That's really not me; there's more to me than that’.”

“The inner me was always under attack by authority, by the way my parents wanted me to be brought up, by these English schools I went to. So I've always felt this kind of anti-authoritarian strain in me, pushing to express itself despite the obstacles.”

“The sense of Islam as a threatening other - with Muslims depicted as fanatical, violent, lustful, irrational - develops during the colonial period in what I called Orientalism. The study of the other has a lot to do with the control and dominance of Europe and the West generally in the Islamic world. And it has persisted because it's based very, very deeply in religious roots, where Islam is seen as a kind of competitor of Christianity.”
“History is written by those who win and those who dominate.”

“Ideas, cultures, and histories cannot seriously be understood or studied without their force, or more precisely their configurations of power, also being studied.”

“What we must eliminate are systems of representation that carry with them the authority, which has become repressive, because it doesn't permit or make room for interventions on the part of those represented.”

“You cannot continue to victimize someone else just because you yourself were a victim once—there has to be a limit” “Every single empire in its official discourse has said that it is not like all the others, that its circumstances are special, that it has a mission to enlighten, civilize, bring order and democracy, and that it uses force only as a last resort. And, sadder still, there always is a chorus of willing intellectuals to say calming words about benign or altruistic empires.”



“We cannot fight for our rights and our history as well as future until we are armed with weapons of criticism and dedicated consciousness.”

“Power, after all, is not just military strength. It is the social power that comes from democracy, the cultural power that comes from freedom of expression and research, the personal power that entitles every Arab citizen to feel that he or she is in fact a citizen, and not just a sheep in some great shepherd's flock.”

“My argument is that history is made by men and women, just as it can also be unmade and rewritten, always with various silence and elisions, always with shapes imposed and disfigurements tolerated.”

“Ironically, many people, including Osama bin Laden and the mujahedeen, were, in fact, nourished by the United States in the early eighties in its efforts to drive the Soviets out of Afghanistan.”

“Since the 1960s, we have seen the failure of the melting pot ideology. This ideology suggested that different historical, cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds could be subordinated to a larger ideology or social amalgam, which is "America". This concept obviously did not work, because paradoxically America encourages a politics of contestation.”

“If you live in the [Middle East] area, you see [U.S. actions] as part of a continuing drive for dominance, and with it a kind of obduracy, a stubborn opposition to the wishes and desires and aspirations of the people there.”

“Note that there was no claim for these attacks [on 9/11]. There were no demands. There were no statements. It was a silent piece of terror.”

“It's very hard, for example, to justify the thirty-four-year occupation of the West Bank and Gaza. It's very hard to justify 140 Israeli settlements and roughly 400,000 settlers. These actions were taken with the support and financing of the United States.”

“The definition of terrorism has to be more precise, so that we are able to discriminate between, for example, what it is that the Palestinians are doing to fight the Israeli military occupation and terrorism of the sort that resulted in the World Trade Center bombing.”


9/25/2017 4:34:59 PM
<![CDATA[Cairo Comix “Barah El Kadr” exhibition ]]>
The festival ran from September 22 to 24.

Egypt Today toured one of Cairo Comix exhibitions called “Barah El Kadr” [Out of the Box] at Legacy Hall at AUC.

Art works displayed in “Barah El Kadr” (Photo by Rana Atef)

The exhibition featured caricature art by an array of art producers such as El Waraka, Tok Tok, Virgin Mega Store, Ee’sar and Nahdet Misr.

The exhibitions were attended by a fair number of young people who have an interest in comics and the art of caricature. The attendances also included anime, gaming fans, and drawing fans.

The “Barah El Kadr” exhibition featured more than 20 graphic comic stories that were composed by Egyptian artists and were displayed on the walls.

Art works displayed in “Barah El Kadr” (Photo by Rana Atef)

The exhibited stories were inspired by the leading comic newspaper Sobian Wi Banat [Boys and Girls].

The 1990’s generation felt warm-hearted with the nostalgia taking over the place, and from the unforgotten memories that were aroused from the weekly paper.

As visitors toured the exhibition, they found that the comic stories were displayed in Arabic; however, the exhibition also featured around two to three English comic stories.

Art works displayed in “Barah El Kadr” (Photo by Rana Atef)

The comic stories tackled sociopolitical issues such as terrorism, chaos, inflation, and Egyptian routine.

The stories were characterized by a sense of humor and serious criticism, in addition to attractive drawing and color usage.

“Barah El Kadr” is a part of the third edition of the Cairo Comix Festival. It is a collaboration project between Mazg for Culture and Arts and Mict organization in Berlin with the aim of producing a number of comics to be published on Mazg and Moraselon outlets.

Art works displayed in “Barah El Kadr” (Photo by Rana Atef)

The project was initiated by four artists, who cooperated to reflect the current events in Egypt and produce a number of comics. In 2016, the project expanded included painters from Tunisia, Egypt, Morocco, and Libya.

The project exhibited a number of journalistic comic stories from different participants and companies.

Art works displayed in “Barah El Kadr” (Photo by Rana Atef)

Cairo Comix is an artistic celebration that aims to gather Egyptians ranging between local and international comic book artists; the festival seeks to provide for the first time numerous prizes such as Best Published Graphic Novel in Arabic, according to the festival’s Facebook page.

Featuring talks, workshops, comic book sales and exhibitions, the festival shed light on trending art projects through bringing together artists, competitors, experts and fans in the same place.

Art works displayed in “Barah El Kadr” (Photo by Rana Atef)

Cairo Comix Festival is about the evolution of the independent art movement in Egypt and more broadly the Middle East and North Africa region.

It held a competition among the participants in different categories including Best Printed Graphic Novel, Best Graphic Short Story published in a book, magazine, or newspaper, and Best Stripped Bar published in magazine or newspaper.

Art works displayed in “Barah El Kadr” (Photo by Rana Atef)

Other categories were provided such as, Best Printed Magazine, Best Electronic Post that was never printed, and Best Project Under Establishment.

Famous guests attended the festival such as writer and painter, Mohamed Salah from Egypt, and painter and story writer, Alfonso Zapico from Spain.

Cairo Comix also organized an exhibition for the icons of Spanish Graphic story called “Sendas”/”Masarat” [Paths].

21984158_1914883228774594_850314802_n Art works displayed in “Barah El Kadr” (Photo by Rana Atef)
9/25/2017 4:27:12 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt considers renewing Iraqi crude deal]]>
EGPC chairman Abed Ezz El-Regal said in a Monday press statement that renewing the contract will happen after paying the value of the shipments already received.

Under an agreement reached in April in Baghdad, 12 million barrels of oil shipments are to be delivered to Egypt from SOMO.

All shipments are expected to be received before the end of 2017. The agreement, which has a 90-day grace period, is subject to renewal.

Due to a shortfall in oil and natural gas production, Egypt has been importing crude and liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipments from several sources in the past few years.

To secure market needs, Egypt imports crude from Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) under a three-year agreement to supply 1.5 million tons per year, which are refined in Egyptian refineries.

It further imports refined petroleum products from Saudi Arabia at 700,000 tons per month under a five-year agreement signed with the Saudi company Aramco in April 2016. ]]>
9/25/2017 4:05:16 PM
<![CDATA[Most schools in Mexico City still closed after earthquake]]>
Search operations in Mexico City were narrowed to five buildings destroyed last Tuesday by a 7.1 magnitude earthquake that killed at least 320 people, Mayor Miguel Angel Mancera told local broadcaster Televisa on Monday.

"These are the places where rescue efforts continue," said Mancera, ticking off locations in central and southern portions of the metropolis.

The quake rendered thousands of people homeless, with many of them living in tents in the streets or emergency shelters, but there were signs the 20 million people who live in Mexico City's greater metropolitan area were gradually resuming their routines.

"Our neighborhood is in mourning," said Deborah Levy, 44, from the trendy Condesa district that was among the worst hit by the quake. "Some neighbors and friends got together (Sunday). We went to eat to cheer ourselves up, looking for a little normality."

Some of the most affected neighborhoods, those built on top of a soft ancient lake bed, still had entire blocks cordoned off.

More than 44,000 schools in six states were due to reopen on Monday, but only 103 in Mexico City, or barely 1 percent of its schools, were set to resume classes after they were certified as structurally safe.

Officials said they did not want to impede relief efforts, so more than 4,000 public schools and nearly as many private schools in the capital will remain closed for now.

The National Autonomous University of Mexico, with 350,000 students at campuses in and around Mexico City, resumed classes on Monday.

Of 6,000 damaged buildings, some 1,500 have yet to be inspected, said Horacio Urbano, president of Centro Urbano, a think tank specializing in urban issues and real estate.

Ten percent of the damaged buildings were constructed after 1990, by which time strict building codes had been enacted in the wake of the 1985 earthquake that killed some 10,000 people.


Search operations, using advanced audio equipment to detect signs of life beneath tonnes of rubble, continued at a few buildings with help from teams from as far afield as Israel and Japan.

At a school in southern Mexico City where 19 children and six adults had previously been reported killed, officials recovered another body on Sunday, that of an adult women.

The search for survivors continued in a ruined office building in the Roma neighborhood and in a five-story apartment building in historic Tlalpan.

Authorities called off efforts in the upper-middle class Lindavista zone after pulling 10 bodies from the rubble over several days, and work at the Tlalpan building was briefly halted on Saturday by a magnitude 6.2 aftershock.

Another 5.7 aftershock struck on Sunday off Mexico's west coast, jolting the southwestern part of the country, and seismologists predicted more tremors to come.

While aid and volunteer workers have flooded into the accessible districts of Mexico City, people in more remote neighborhoods and surrounding states have received less attention.

Miguel Angel Luna, a 40-year old architect, joined a caravan of civilians that headed out late last week to help isolated communities scattered around the base of the Popocatepetl volcano, located about 50 miles (80 km) southeast of the Mexican capital.

Around 40 percent of the adobe homes he saw in poor villages had been completely destroyed and some 80 percent were heavily damaged, Luna said.

"We're talking about very poor communities," Luna said. "They don't have tools, they don't have materials, they don't have money to rebuild."]]>
9/25/2017 3:52:06 PM
<![CDATA[In-depth with Hadeer Mahmoud: On society and photography]]>
Egypt Today spoke with the ambitious artist about her newly released project, “Love, Loss, and Longing.” Mahmoud is known for her impressive ideas and vision in retelling different stories of Egyptian society.

Mahmoud released the documentary project in cooperation with the Arab Fund for Arts and Culture, the Prince Claus Fund and the Arab Documentary Photography Program team.

The documentary focuses on the emotions of a lonely woman who lost her husband due to political issues after the January 25 Revolution, according to her personal account on Facebook.

et: Tell me a bit about yourself, how did you start your career?

HM: I started my photo journalism career at Al Tahrir newspaper in 2011, then I moved to El Watan newspaper. Since then, I participated in covering mostly political events in Egypt since the January 25 Revolution.

et: What do you like most about documentaries?

HM: By working as a photographer in journalism, I am communicating with people. I love their stories, capturing the reality they live, and expressing their problems and expectations.

et: Tell me more about your recent project, “Love, Loss, and Longing.” Why did you choose this theme and focus only on women?

HM: The idea of the project came from the repeated random political arrests in Egypt. I chose women because they are group that suffers the most, and they are facing very hard social conditions in Egypt.

I just imagined my life as a woman whose husband or loved one is in prison.

et: Working on documentaries’ topics, what are your goals behind the documentary?

HM: Showing stories to everyone, and helping the heroes of my stories, is my main aim. Receiving positive feedback from the families of the imprisoned, cheers me up a lot. Recently one of them told me they can trust journalism again.

et: Will this project participate in any festivals or competitions?
HM: Actually the project was supported and funded by the Arab Documentary Photography Program (ADPP) and AFAC - The Arab Fund for Arts, the Magnum Foundation and the Prince Claus Fund.

et: Tell me a bit about your future plans, what are your upcoming projects?

HM: I am currently working on a project about African refugees, but I am still collecting data.
9/25/2017 3:48:36 PM
<![CDATA[Bilateral talks held between President Sisi and UAE Crown Prince]]>
After his arrival to the UAE, Sisi held bilateral talks. He expressed his pleasure to visit Abu Dhabi and asked to transfer his greetings to UAE President Khalifa bin Zayed bin Sultan Al-Nahyan, said presidential spokesman Alaa Youssef.

He stressed the strategic cooperation between the two countries, praising the role of the UAE in promoting joint Arab action, and further stressed Egypt’s care in furthering bilateral relations in different fields.

Nahyan confirmed during the meeting that Egypt is the cornerstone for the stability and security of Arab countries, highlighting deep friendly relations between the two nations.

The meeting also tackled the crisis in the Middle East and the efforts exerted by Arab countries in solving them and enabling its national institutions to resume their responsibility of combating terrorism. In particular, the meeting dealt with funding terrorism and the preservation of national security.

Both sides at the end of the talks confirmed the importance of standing against interference in Arab affairs and intensifying their efforts in facing unprecedented challenges that destabilize the Arab region.

Sisi left on Monday for the United Arab Emirates on a two-day official visit.

During his visit, the president is scheduled to discuss with UAE leaders the promoting of deeply-rooted ties between the two countries, as well as, consultations and coordination on a host of regional and international issues of mutual interest, Youssef said in statements.

The president's visit to Abu Dhabi comes within the framework of distinguished ties between the two countries at all levels, the spokesman added.
9/25/2017 3:46:41 PM
<![CDATA[The Power of Doing Less: A gentle yoga workshop]]>
Osana is based in a villa at El Sarayat, Maadi. Osana offers holistic and healing activities for people of all ages, which includes; yoga, pilates, treatments such as homeopathy, massage and Reiki.

The workshop focuses on developing a deeper backbend, stronger arm balance and looser hips. Participants will understand the importance of how freedom is achieved by allowing space.

The use of chairs and blankets bolsters yoga practicing and will help people explore how a gentle approach to yoga can create a deeper understanding of our bodies and nurture compassion in our hearts.
9/25/2017 3:44:27 PM
<![CDATA[Depleted Spartak must play Liverpool without fear – coach]]>
The Russian champions face a confident Liverpool in their second Group E match in Moscow, with the English side coming off a 3-2 Premier League win at Leicester City.

Spartak will be without Dutch striker Quincy Promes who sustained a calf injury in the 2-0 win over Kuban Krasnodar in the Russian Cup last week.

The hosts will also miss captain Denis Glushakov, striker Ze Luis and midfielder Jano Ananidze due to injuries.

"We will have 11 players on the pitch, others will go in, and we will play our game," Carrera told a news conference on Monday.

"We know that we are playing a strong team with quality players. Our job is to play our game without fear."

Spartak won their first Russian Premier League title in 16 years last season but have made mediocre start to this campaign, lying seventh in the standings with three wins from 11 matches.

The club last week avoided the possibility of playing Liverpool behind closed doors after UEFA fined them 60,000 euros ($71,000 and imposed a ticket ban for their next away match in European competition over a flare incident during the 1-1 draw against Slovenia's Maribor this month.

Spartak called on fans to refrain from such behaviour during their match against Liverpool who drew their opening group match 2-2 at home to Sevilla.

"The use of flares during the next match can lead to much more serious sanctions for Spartak, including hosting Champions League home matches behind closed doors," they said in a statement.
9/25/2017 3:41:26 PM
<![CDATA[Tips to end lower back pain]]>
- Even though resting in bed might seem like the perfect solution to treat back pain, the website stresses the fact that lying in one position might actually lead to complications. Instead try to resort to working out and moving even if slowly.

- Sleep on your side with a pillow between your knees to help your spine rest in a comfortable position.

- If you spend a lot of time sitting, make sure to sit up straight with your back supported with the chair and your shoulders relaxed. Also, it might help if you put a small cushion behind your lower back.

- Applying ice wrapped in a towel to your lower back or whichever area that aches, may help reduce pain. The website recommends using it a few times a day for 20 minutes at a time, and then shifting to heat by trying warm pads, which relax muscles and calm the whole body.

- Try consulting a physical therapist as they can teach you the best postures for sitting, sleeping and working out. According to Web MD, a stronger body is less likely to suffer from back pain in the future, so it is of great importance to work on your core muscles to support your back properly.
9/25/2017 3:39:16 PM
<![CDATA[Qatar holds tournament draw without boycotting states]]>
Requests by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain to delay December's Gulf Nations Cup had been rejected, however, the Arab Gulf Cup Football Federation (AGCFF) said.

"The tournament is going ahead on time," AGCFF General Secretary Jassim al-Rumaithi told reporters after the draw.

Saudi, Emirati and Bahraini officials did not attend the draw. The other nations scheduled to play in the tournament are Iraq, Oman, Yemen and Qatar. Kuwait, who have featured in past competitions, can play only if a suspension by FIFA is lifted in time.

In June, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and other Arab states cut political and economic ties with Qatar over accusations that Qatar supports terrorism -- a charge Doha denies.

Al-Rumaithi said Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Bahraini had not confirmed their participation in the tournament, and that the competition needed at least five teams under the current format.

Hamid al-Shaibani, chairman of the competitions committee, said teams that chose not to compete could face financial sanctions.

The Gulf Nations Cup is being held in Qatar as the state spends billions of dollars on preparations to host the 2022 World Cup, and also as Saudi Arabia get ready to compete in the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

Qatar, Bahrain, Iraq and Yemen have been drawn in Group A, with Saudi Arabia, Oman and the UAE in Group B. Kuwait will join Group B if their FIFA suspension is lifted.

FIFA banned Kuwait's national soccer federation last year over alleged government interference in the running of the body.

Oman Football Association general secretary Said Othman al-Bulushi said that delaying the Gulf Nations Cup would be damaging for regional football.

"It will be a negative for the sport in the Gulf countries but we hope that the three countries, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Bahrain, will be participating, inshallah (God willing)," he told Reuters.

In June, FIFA said a Qatari referee had been removed from officiating a 2018 World Cup qualifying match between the UAE and Thailand "for sporting reasons and in view of the current geopolitical situation”.]]>
9/25/2017 3:35:54 PM
<![CDATA[Kyiv Chamber Orchestra to perform at Cairo Opera House ]]>
The orchestra will be conducted by Ukrainian Harmen Makarenko, who was named by UNESCO the Artist of Peace.

The international flutist and Cairo Opera House director Enas Abdel-Dayem will participate with Kyiv Chamber Orchestra as a guest of honor.

A number of classics from many iconic composers such as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Antonio Vivaldi, and Johann Sebastian Bach will be introduced.

The orchestra also will perform a number of Ukrainian folk music selections, in addition to Om Kalthom’s “Ana fy Entezarak” [I Am Waiting For You], composed by Zakria Ahmed, and “Hayart Aa’lby” [You Have Confused My Heart], composed by Riyad Al Sunbati.

“Gathering different nations is done mainly through culture and arts. Culture is the essential mirror that reflects civilization. Enhancing the Egyptian artistic position, Kyiv Chamber Orchestra will impressively combine the oriental scales with the symphonic epic and Ukrainian folk music,” according to a statement by the Cairo Opera House.

Kyiv Chamber Orchestra is one of the prominent and oldest Ukrainian orchestras.

It was founded in 1963, and has performed many successful concerts around the world in countries like Italy, France and Belgium.

Its repertoire contains a number of international compositions.
9/25/2017 3:27:11 PM
<![CDATA[AMOC targets LE 1.1B profits in FY2017/18: Chairman]]>
Moustafa added that AMOC is waiting for the approval of the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC) to buy condensates from the UAE’s Dana Gas.

Through April and May, the company was able to export two Mazut shipments worth $15 million, the chairman noted.

Around 39.5 percent of Al Ahly Capital stake in the company, equivalent to 10 percent of the company’s shares, will be listed as global depository receipts (GDRs) on London Stock Exchange (LSE), the chairman told Egypt Today.

Moustafa expected that the listing will be before the second half of October, adding that this move will encourage the rest of investors to offer additional stakes of the company’s shares.

AMOC intends to establish a huge project for Mazut refining of a total investment value of $500 million.

Egypt's Ministry of Petroleum has put a plan to get rid of the Mazut by 2021 by refining and transferring it to other products of high value.
9/25/2017 3:25:03 PM
<![CDATA[Eman Abd El Aty: 7 months’ treatment journey ends in Abu Dhabi]]>
Everyone following Abd El Aty’s health for the past seven months woke up on Monday with shocking news of her death due to complications from heart disease and kidney dysfunction, according to Abu Dhabi’s Burjeel Hospital Executive Manager Yassin el-Shahat.

Eman Ibrahim- File Photo

How did it all start?

Abd El Aty had a rare condition. Since her childhood, she suffered from an unknown disease causing her to become overweight, reaching 500 kilograms and subsequently paralyzed. According to her family, she was unable to leave her home for around 11 years.

Last year, Eman’s sister, Shimaa, wrote a post on her Facebook page talking about her sister’s rare condition. Unexpectedly, several Facebook users and activists shared the post and reacted widely to it.

On February, she started her treatment by traveling to Mumbai, India, where Dr. Muffazal Lakdawala promised to do his best.

Abd El Aty travelled on a specially modified plane to undergo emergency weight-loss surgery.

Shortly after arriving in the Indian Saifee hospital, media outlets reported that she would be on her way to losing the title of the heaviest woman alive.

According to Times of India, in March, a prescribed liquid diet and some physiotherapy helped Abd El Aty reduce her weight by getting rid of any extra water in her body.

Eman Ibrahim- File Photo

Moving to Abu Dhabi

In May, Abd El Aty travelled to Abu Dhabi to continue her treatment. After the first round of surgeries, the 37-year-old woman was seen sitting up and smiling while listening to music and using the TV remote control provided by the hospital, according to Abu Dhabi news outlets.

Announcing that she lost 250 kilos, the doctors commented, "She looks a happier and a slimmer version of her past self. She can finally fit into a wheelchair and sit for a longer period of time, something we never dreamt of three months back."

A press conference was held in Abu Dhabi, July 24, to present the recent developments in Abd El Aty’s health condition, and the conference was attended by the Egyptian Ambassador in the Emirates, Dr. Shamshir Fayal, the supervisor of her treatment; and Dr. Yassin Ibrahim.

Abd El Aty herself attended the conference proving her stable health condition.

“The patient now eats her food by herself, and her body is functioning normally,” said Dr. Ibrahim during the press conference, adding that “she is undergoing physiotherapy and she can talk normally now.”

Despite the intensive care that Abd El Aty was placed under, she was pronounced dead Monday morning at a hospital in Abu Dhabi due to complications from heart disease and kidney dysfunction. The Egyptian national was under the supervision of a medical team consisting of 20 doctors.

9/25/2017 3:16:34 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt to host Third African Ministerial Forum on Science in February]]>
The forum is due to be held during the period February 10- 12 in cooperation with the AfDB and participation of African young researchers and civil society organizations involved in the scientific research.

During his meeting with the AfDB delegation, they discussed means to boost cooperation in fields of mutual concern.

Abdel Ghaffar voiced Egypt's political leadership keenness on deepening and consolidating Egyptian-African relations in all domains, especially the scientific, educational and research ones.

The minister pointed out that the forum is expected to address a number of issues including IT, agriculture, food security green-economy, energy and water.

He affirmed that the forum aims at formulating a vision based on transferring scientific research outcome into economic products in cooperation with the private sector.

Scientific research should be invested to help in solving problems facing the African continent and in achieving objectives of its people to live in more prosperous and stable life, the minister noted.

The meeting was attended by a number of the ministry's officials and representatives of bodies involved in the scientific research.]]>
9/25/2017 3:04:29 PM
<![CDATA[Abdel Aziz honors Egyptian champions ]]>
Abdel Aziz will honor the U23 and U19 volleyball national teams, in addition to the U19 taekwondo national team, and the Egyptian swimmer Omar Hegazy, on Tuesday 6 p.m. at a hotel in Cairo International airport.

The minister will honor Egyptian players after the U23 volleyball team won fifth place at the World Championship held in Cairo International stadium from August 18 to 25, while the U19 volleyball team won sixth place at the World Championship hosted by Bahrain from August 18 to 25 as well.

The taekwondo national team won six medals in the U19 Taekwondo World Championships held in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt from August 24 to 28. Hegazy, a swimmer with a disability, will be honored for achieving a new record by crossing the Gulf of Aqaba from, Egypt to Aqaba, Jordan. The 10 kilometer swim took eight hours.
9/25/2017 3:02:27 PM
<![CDATA[ Hamas and its rival Fatah to end split, reunify government ]]>
Hamas, the militant group ruling Gaza, said that it was prepared to accept the demands of the President of the Palestinian authority Mahmoud Abbas, to end the split with Fatah by dismantling its administrative committee that is ruling Gaza, and by holding general elections in West Bank and Gaza also.

The Palestinian government has declared that it will visit the Gaza Strip on October 2 upon orders given by President Abbas, along with the Fatah member to assume government responsibility in the southern governorates after Hamas has invited them with the consensus government to come to Gaza to practice its mission and carry out its duties in the Gaza strip, according to the spokesperson of the Palestinian government.

This was made after delegations from Hamas and Fatah held separate talks in Cairo for reconciliation in recent days the Egyptian intelligence service acting as mediators.

Fatah’s Central Committee (the highest decision-making body of the Palestinian Authority) praised Egypt’s efforts in the inter-Palestinian reconciliation on Saturday.

Hamas has been greatly weakened by an Israeli and Egyptian blockade as its economy is in tatters after the war, and residents of Gaza only have electricity for a few hours a day. Abbas has made use of this situation by putting financial pressure on Hamas through increasing the electricity payments in Gaza to force Hamas to accept his demands.
9/25/2017 3:00:42 PM
<![CDATA[EGX ends on mixed note for 3rd session, benchmark up 0.5%]]>The benchmark index EGX30 rose 0.49 percent to close at 13,674 points.

The small and mid-cap index EGX70 shed 0.11 percent to end at 770.76 points. The broader index EGX100 index also inched down 0.01 percent to close at 1,703.7 points.

Market capitalization gained LE 2.36 billion ($133.5 million) to LE 735.66 billion, up from 733.3 billion Sunday.
Turnover leveled up to LE 1.13 billion after registering LE 796 million Sunday, while traded volume increased to LE 383 million shares from 244 million shares yesterday.

Local investors were net buyers with a total of LE 42.7 million, while Arab and foreign traders sold at LE 117,768 and LE 42.5 million, respectively.

The Financial Services excluding Banks led sectors in terms of traded values and volumes with LE 212.3 million and 131.7 million shares, respectively.

Alexandria Flour Mills topped gainers and skyrocketed 9.97 percent, while Egyptian International Pharmaceuticals (EIPICO) led the worst performers and dropped 6.89 percent.
9/25/2017 2:58:48 PM
<![CDATA[Dolce & Gabbana play their trump card with queen of hearts collection]]>
Wearing glittered, embroidered or chiffon dresses, with eye-catching crowns on their heads or red roses in their hair, Dolce & Gabbana’s queens of hearts came in all colors, shapes and textures.

Models opened the show posing on a stage, with moving playing cards as a backdrop, all wearing black creations on the notes of Pietro Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana opera.

But that gave way to more colorful designs which carried all of the brand’s signature traits of abundance, such as lace, gems, flowers, sequins, gold, embroidery as well as references to Sicily and its traditions, culture and food.

They walked along a runway that mimicked a long red carpet with young fashion advocates -- so-called influencers key to many of Dolce & Gabbana’s collections and campaigns -- sitting in the front row of the Milan show, held in a former cinema.

The queen of hearts theme was at points interrupted with opulent clothes and accessories with vegetable print or shapes. Models wore big dresses with pea and cabbage prints, carrot hats and aubergine-shaped glitter earrings. One also showed off a dress with a pattern of Sicily’s famous Cannoli pastries.

“Love is beauty” read a t-shirt carried over an Andy Warhol inspired fucsia pink skirt with jars labeled “Amore”, love.

But simplicity was prized at the show’s finale as the Italian fashion house sent all the models back on the runway, stripped of the intricate designs and simply wearing black underwear, as to convey the importance of love over possessions.]]>
9/25/2017 2:56:31 PM
<![CDATA[Egypt inks 83 oil, gas deals with foreign firms in 4 yrs: Mola]]>
During the minister’s meeting with the French Chamber of Commerce in Egypt, Mola highlighted that this number is a record in the history of the petroleum industry in Egypt.

The confidence of foreign investors in the Egyptian economy increased after seeing the economic reforms carried out by the government, the minister said.

Mola added that the new strategy for developing mineral resources was prepared by the Ministry of Petroleum with the aim of benefitting the Egyptian economy as much as possible from these resources.

The minister expressed Egypt’s interest of becoming a power trading center, adding that the country is aware that achieving such a strategic goal shall be accompanied by a comprehensive development plan for the infrastructure, gas networks, pipelines, storage warehouses, ports, liquefying plants and refining labs.

Egypt has all the potential to become an energy hub, and exerts great efforts to develop this potential, in order to enable countries to rely on Egypt, Mola said.

Moreover, Mola noted that the government gives due attention to value added industries, which have a strong economic reflection, adding that the petroleum sector is aspiring to promote its contribution as an economic growth driver in Egypt.
9/25/2017 2:47:44 PM
<![CDATA[Merkel says plans to serve full four years after election]]>
"My decision (to stand for a full term) last year did not depend on what percentage I scored," she said, adding she went into the election campaign with "no illusions" that her fourth term could be difficult.

Merkel said she believed that voters had given their verdict now and that the parties should accept the election outcome by trying to form a government and avoiding new elections]]>
9/25/2017 2:46:25 PM
<![CDATA[Erdogan, Putin discuss Iraqi Kurdish referendum]]>
They said the two leaders also talked about the Astana process regarding Syria and agreed to discuss regional developments at greater length when they meet in the Turkish capital Ankara on Thursday.]]>
9/25/2017 2:44:27 PM
<![CDATA[et Jewelry Designer of the Week: Huwa]]>
Huwa was launched in early 2017 by Wali, and the word “Huwa” translates to “him” in Arabic.

Wali is Egyptian but was born in Kuwait and raised in Saudi Arabia. He graduated with a degree in Mass Communications from Richmond University, London, England. He then pursued his Master’s in International Marketing and Management at Westminster University. Now the designer lives in Egypt, and has decided to open up his brand in Egypt.

His first collection and newest collection is Sandstorm. Sandstrom has around 17 models of cufflinks, lapel pins and tie-clips that are made of sterling silver or gold and platinum plated brass, embellished with precious and semi-precious stones such as emeralds, sapphires, diamonds and pearls. The collection features authentic symbols of Middle Eastern culture like; palm trees, dervishes, arabesque and architecture.

Wali believes that he will inspire young fashion designers to get into the market and create their mark.
9/25/2017 2:40:52 PM
<![CDATA[The must-knows of Kurdistan’s referendum to date ]]>
Six hours of voting in northern Iraq on Monday in the independence referendum organized by Kurdish authorities have passed, despite pressure from Baghdad, threats from Turkey and Iran, and international warnings from the U.S. administration, Egypt and other countries.

Baghdad, Ankara and Tehran have taken escalating measures against Erbil in retaliation for the referendum.

Polls are open in three northern provinces that make up the region, as well as in disputed areas claimed by the Kurds and the government in Baghdad since 8 a.m. Iraqi local time.

Baghdad escalating measures

Iraqi Parliament decides to close crossing borders with Kurdistan, according to al-Arabiya correspondent who added that more Iraqi escalating decisions will be taken Monday evening at the Iraqi cabinet meeting in Baghdad.

Iraqi Parliament is voting to dismiss civil servants and officials who have taken part in Monday’s referendum in Kurdistan. Iraqi Parliamentarian Mowaffak al-Rubaie suggests “sorting” Kurdish parliamentarians, according to Al-Sumaria TV.

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki calls on the Iraqi government for a comprehensive boycott on Kurdistan’s referendum supporters.

Iraqi soldiers will take part in Turkish military maneuvers over the Iraqi Kurdistan border; the Turkish media quoted Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım on Monday.

Turkish escalating measures

Turkey currently allows a one-way crossing from Turkey to Iraq, said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan during a press conference, escalating stance as Iraqi Kurds vote in independence referendum.

“Barzani sold northern Iraq to Israel,” Turkish newspaper Yenisafak described the Kurds’ independence referendum taking place on Monday.

Erdogan stressed that “Turkey will close its border with Kurdistan and stop oil deals;” adding that “Israel should stop supporting Kurdistan’s referendum.”

“Separatist steps are unacceptable at this time,” Erdogan remarked on the Iraqi Kurdish referendum on Monday.

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım said on Monday that Turkey will establish closer relations with the Iraqi Central government following Kurdistan’s independence referendum, Reuters reported.

In his statements, which aired on the Turkish media and his official Twitter account, Yildrim added that Turkey “would respond if its interests were threatened.”

Previously, the Turkish Prime Minister gave a statement during a press conference saying that his country “discusses imposition of economic, political and military sanctions in retaliation for Kurdistan’s referendum.”

Earlier on Monday, Turkish Customs Minister Bulent Tufenkci denied blocking Habur border gate with northern Iraq, says it “remains open.”

Iran’s escalating measures

Iran has closed its border with the Kurdish region of Iraq following a request from Baghdad, a statement from its Foreign Ministry has said on Monday.

Turkish President Erdogan and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani spoke by phone on Sunday regarding an Iraqi-Kurdish independence referendum and voiced concern that it will cause regional chaos, Erdogan's office said on Sunday.

"The two leaders noted that not cancelling the referendum will bring with it chaos in the region and they stressed the great importance which they attach to Iraq's territorial integrity," the statement said according to Reuters.

Earlier on Sunday, Iran halted flights to and from Kurdish regions in northern Iraq in retaliation to Monday’s independence referendum. It also started war-games on the Kurdish border.

Iranian authorities stopped air traffic to the international airports of Erbil and Sulaimaniya, in Iraqi Kurdistan, upon a request from Baghdad, Fars News Agency said on Sunday.
9/25/2017 2:38:59 PM
<![CDATA[Has John Casson figured out how to use Egyptian humor?]]>
BBC attributes the ambassador's attractiveness to his young age and charming humor. "John Casson doesn't really fit the serious, formal stereotype or a British ambassador - he's young, has a relaxed manner, and is fond of making jokes. His style has won him admirers in Egypt and more than 18,000 followers on Twitter," BBC reported.

True enough, Twitter took a great liking to Casson; his followers have reached 500,000. After launching the “Khalsana b Sharaka” (Together is Better) initiative video on his account, many Egyptians responded with funny comments. Even though the initiative tackles an important matter like gender equality in the workplace, Egyptians responded to the matter in a far less serious manner.

That was mainly so because the term “Khalsana b Sharaka” originally comes from a widespread slang term in Egypt, “Khalsana b Sheyaka,” which sarcastically translates to “All has been said and done nicely.” Casson was speaking in Arabic in the video, and he was successful in getting many Egyptians to listen to the video introducing the imitative.

One user replied back to the ambassador’s video saying, “Are you sure you’re British and not from Imbaba?” Referring to Imababa, due to it being a local, folk suburb in Egypt, where most lower classes reside.

Another user who also disregarded the topic of the video completely asked, “Let’s get down to the more important questions, how many retweets would it take for you to give me the visa?”

In another tweet, Casson wrote in Arabic, congratulating Mohamed Salah for scoring four goals in the Premier League.

The tweet says, “Abu Salah scored four goals in the Premier League, and better is coming… The Egyptians are coming.”

One respondent replied back to the tweet saying, “It feels as though he’s the Minister of Shubra.” Again, referring to Shubra, another local area in Egypt; meaning that the ambassador feels more folk Egyptian than anything else.

Nevertheless, does the ambassador’s charisma help him reach more Egyptians of all walks in life, or does his humor cause people to focus more on his persona rather than the topics he advocates?
9/25/2017 2:36:13 PM
<![CDATA[New cities, SCZone, infrastructure key focus of UK firms: Trade envoy]]>
Heading a delegation of 14 British companies, who are visiting Egypt to explore investment opportunities, Donaldson said that the companies will meet chairman of SCZone Mohab Mamesh to discuss potential investments.

Donaldson said he invited Mamesh to visit the UK to promote the SCZone projects.

The companies met the Minister of Housing Mostafa Madbouly to discuss investment in the New Administrative Capital and New Alamein City.

The UK is welcoming the economic reform measures taken by the Egyptian government, "as it made Egypt attractive for UK investors," he said.

Donaldson said that after this visit, he will meet with investors in Manchester and Edinburgh to market the available opportunities in Egypt.

"I have also invited Madbouly to visit the UK to promote the New Alamein City," he noted.

Donaldson said he met the Armed Forces' Engineering Authority and the Minister of Petroleum Tarek El-Molla, adding that he will meet Prime Minister Sherif Ismail on Monday as well.

"In general, we are welcoming the economic reform and we are seeing its fruits now reflected in economic growth rates... we are here now to make it easier for UK companies to invest in Egypt," Donaldson added.

Donaldson, arrived in Cairo with a delegation of 14 British companies on Sunday to explore new business opportunities in various sectors

The companies, including Rolls Royce, Bombardier and London International Patient Services, intend to invest in the infrastructure, defense, healthcare and agriculture sectors.

Seventy percent of the companies involved are new to doing business in Egypt.

British investors will be looking to explore new opportunities in the sectors of infrastructure, health care, railway and ports, in addition to the non-oil sector.
9/25/2017 2:33:11 PM
<![CDATA[Federer leads Team Europe to victory in first Laver Cup]]>
Despite cruising through the first two days, the Europeans needed the last match to finalise the victory and show the dominance expected from a team featuring five of the world's top seven players.

Federer delivered in a tight 4-6 7-6(6) 11-9 win over world number 20 Nick Kyrgios, with the Australian pushing to the final point as he sought a win that would have forced an overtime doubles match to decide the tournament.

But Kyrgios squandered a chance at match point and then smashed the ball into the net to end the battle, spurring Federer's European team mates, led by top-ranked Rafael Nadal, to leap off the bench and embrace the Swiss at the net.

"I was ready to go. I had to be. That is what a team member does. The boys played fantastic all weekend but we knew it could change very quickly on Sunday," Federer said.

"I was looking at getting ready maybe for doubles at the end... But I got it done."
An earlier victory from big-hitting German Alexander Zverev also helped fight off the last-day comeback from Team World, which entered the day 9-3 down after dropping six of the first eight matches.

With matches worth three points on Sunday - versus two on Saturday and one on Friday - the group battled back with Americans John Isner and Jack Sock downing Croatian Marin Cilic and Czech Tomas Berdych, who was playing in front of the hometown crowd at Prague's O2 Arena.

The American duo limited the hard-serving Europeans to three aces in a 7-6(5) 7-6(6) victory.

Zverev, the youngest player in the top 10 at age 20, then faced Team World's highest ranked player at number 16, Sam Querrey. He broke the American's serve midway through the first set and never looked back en route to a 6-4 6-4 win.


That left Nadal to face Isner, winless in six career meetings with the Spaniard. But the world number 17 rattled Nadal from the beginning and delivered a barrage of 23 aces and several forceful winners and drop shots.

"I walked to the court like I had absolutely nothing to lose and I just went for it," Isner said.

Federer then played hero, battling back after dropping the first set to Kyrgios who had looked to keep Isner's giant-killing momentum going.

The Laver Cup, named after Australian tennis hero Rod Laver, has won plaudits from the players. Matches were close despite fears they would be little more than an exhibition.

Federer and Nadal, the game's top two players who split this season's four grand slams, teamed up on Saturday, putting aside a long-running rivalry to play doubles competitively for the first time, giving fans an eagerly anticipated treat.

With next year's play moving to Chicago, a John McEnroe-captained Team World will look to bounce back against Bjorn Borg's Team Europe.

"We were so, so close to pulling this off," McEnroe said.

9/25/2017 2:00:00 PM
<![CDATA[Fragrant name for baby panda unveiled by Tokyo governor]]>
Japan celebrated the birth of the healthy female cub in June, five years after her mother, Shin Shin, lost another cub within days of its birth. It has been nearly three decades since a baby panda at the capital’s Ueno Zoo has survived this long.

The name, written with the Chinese character for fragrant, was chosen from more than 322,000 suggestions submitted by the public. Most pandas are named at around 100 days of age, which Xiang Xiang reached last week.

“This name evokes the idea of fragrance, and it’s extremely cute,” Koike, a former ruling party lawmaker who dealt Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Liberal Democratic Party a historic defeat in Tokyo elections in July, told a news conference.

The media-savvy Koike revealed the name just hours before Abe was set to announce a snap election that her party and its allies are readying to fight, under the banner of a new conservative party.

The baby, at birth small enough to fit in the palm of a hand, now has typical panda markings and weighs roughly 6 kg (13 lb). She can support herself on all fours and is taking tentative steps.

Shin Shin and her partner, Ri Ri, arrived from China in February 2011 and went on view soon after the following month’s devastating earthquake, offering a scrap of good news for an anguished nation.

A male cub born in 2012 was the first in 24 years at the Ueno Zoo, but six days after its birth, it was found lying motionless on its mother’s belly and efforts to revive it failed.]]>
9/25/2017 1:28:24 PM
<![CDATA[Federer leads Team Europe to victory in first Laver Cup]]>
Despite cruising through the first two days, the Europeans needed the last match to finalise the victory and show the dominance expected from a team featuring five of the world's top seven players.

Federer delivered in a tight 4-6 7-6(6) 11-9 win over world number 20 Nick Kyrgios, with the Australian pushing to the final point as he sought a win that would have forced an overtime doubles match to decide the tournament.

But Kyrgios squandered a chance at match point and then smashed the ball into the net to end the battle, spurring Federer's European team mates, led by top-ranked Rafael Nadal, to leap off the bench and embrace the Swiss at the net.

"I was ready to go. I had to be. That is what a team member does. The boys played fantastic all weekend but we knew it could change very quickly on Sunday," Federer said.

"I was looking at getting ready maybe for doubles at the end... But I got it done."

An earlier victory from big-hitting German Alexander Zverev also helped fight off the last-day comeback from Team World, which entered the day 9-3 down after dropping six of the first eight matches.

With matches worth three points on Sunday - versus two on Saturday and one on Friday - the group battled back with Americans John Isner and Jack Sock downing Croatian Marin Cilic and Czech Tomas Berdych, who was playing in front of the hometown crowd at Prague's O2 Arena.

The American duo limited the hard-serving Europeans to three aces in a 7-6(5) 7-6(6) victory.

Zverev, the youngest player in the top 10 at age 20, then faced Team World's highest ranked player at number 16, Sam Querrey. He broke the American's serve midway through the first set and never looked back en route to a 6-4 6-4 win.


That left Nadal to face Isner, winless in six career meetings with the Spaniard. But the world number 17 rattled Nadal from the beginning and delivered a barrage of 23 aces and several forceful winners and drop shots.

"I walked to the court like I had absolutely nothing to lose and I just went for it," Isner said.

Federer then played hero, battling back after dropping the first set to Kyrgios who had looked to keep Isner's giant-killing momentum going.

The Laver Cup, named after Australian tennis hero Rod Laver, has won plaudits from the players. Matches were close despite fear

9/25/2017 1:22:06 PM
<![CDATA[Do’souka to perform at Gramophone on Oct. 6]]>
Although the band released its first single two years ago, it managed to be one of the most successful underground bands.

Do’souka is using folk/acoustic tunes to create a cool and enjoyable musical mood.

The band is known for a number of singles such as; “Hasharab Hashesh,” which was played for more than 6 million times on Soundcloud and Ya Bakhtak.

It performed many live concerts at Room Art Space & Café.
The band consists of four members: Khaled el-Demerdash on drums, Michael Yehia on guitar, Amr Ismael on bass, and Luka on guitar and vocals. ]]>
9/25/2017 1:04:14 PM
<![CDATA[Iraqi PM orders security services "to protect citizens being coerced" in Kurdistan]]>
Abadi's order was announced in statement from his office.

Abadi has said the vote is against the constitution and asked the Kurdish authorities to cancel it. ]]>
9/25/2017 1:03:30 PM
<![CDATA[ U.S. should stand against Iran: American Congress member]]>
He added in statements to the UAE-owned newspaper, Al-Ain, that Iran has been backing and funding terrorism for a long time, which poses a huge threat to the Middle East region.

“I want the Iranian people to have freedom like the Americas; I want the Iranian people to have the ability to choose their leaders under fair and free elections,” Engel said.

He affirmed that he is against the aggression that the Iranian regime has shown all over the Middle East, along with its continuous support to terrorism groups and organizations including Hezbollah.

9/25/2017 1:02:56 PM
<![CDATA[Trump keen on dialogue to end Gulf crisis:Qatar Foreign Minister]]>
Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani told reporters in Paris that he had seen from President Trump a "greater desire" to fix the crisis and that Trump "doesn't want to see conflict among friends."

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt cut political and trade ties with Qatar on June 5, accusing it of supporting terrorism and their arch-foe Iran - charges which Doha denies]]>
9/25/2017 12:51:47 PM
<![CDATA[Turkish, Iranian presidents discuss Iraqi Kurdish referendum:Erdogan's office]]>
"The two leaders noted that not cancelling the referendum will bring with it chaos in the region and they stressed the great importance which they attach to Iraq's territorial integrity," the statement said.]]>
9/25/2017 12:48:32 PM
<![CDATA[Turkey's Erdogan threatens to close oil taps over Kurdish referendum]]>
"After this, let's see through which channels the northern Iraqi regional government will send its oil, or where it will sell it," Erdogan said in a speech at a forum in Istanbul.

"We have the tap. The moment we close the tap, then it's done."

He stopped short of saying that Turkey had decided to close off the oil flow. Hundreds of thousands of barrels of oil a day flow through the pipeline in Turkey from the northern Iraq region. ]]>
9/25/2017 12:46:10 PM
<![CDATA[HOTAC posts LE 509.6M, Banazioun gains LE 50M profits in FY16/17]]>
The companies’ revenues grew 39 percent to exceed LE 2 billion in FY 2016/2017.

Seven out of nine firms affiliated to HOTAC saw an enhancement in their results, four achieved a rise in their profitability and two narrowed their losses.

Banzaioun – the New Fashion Co. gained LE 1.5 million ($84,890) profits and overcame its annual profits of LE 8.5 million recorded in the fiscal year of 2015/2016.

The company will

pump LE 50 million

($3 million) as new investments during the first half of the fiscal year 2017/18 with the partnership of the private sector to develop a number of commercial branches.

HOTAC and Banzaioun are affiliated to the Ministry of Public Business Sector.


Business sector revenues

reached LE 80 billion after the latest economic reform measures taken recently, according to Minister of the Public Business Sector Ashraf el-Sharqawi.
9/25/2017 12:44:50 PM
<![CDATA[Uber CEO tells London: I'm sorry for the mistakes we've made]]>
On Friday, the British capital's transport regulator deemed Uber unfit to run a taxi service and decided not to renew its licence to operate, which will end this week, citing the firm's approach to reporting serious criminal offences and background checks on drivers.

"While Uber has revolutionised the way people move in cities around the world, it's equally true that we've got things wrong along the way. On behalf of everyone at Uber globally, I apologise for the mistakes we've made," CEO Dara Khosrowshahi wrote in an open letter.

"We will appeal the decision on behalf of millions of Londoners, but we do so with the knowledge that we must also change."]]>
9/25/2017 12:42:47 PM
<![CDATA[U.S. hopes for "good deliverables" during Trump's China visit]]>
Li told Ross that the two countries' common interests far outweighed their differences, and their economic and trade relationship had enormously benefited both countries and the world.

Trump will likely visit China in November as part of a trip that will take him to an ASEAN summit in the Philippines and an APEC summit in Vietnam.]]>
9/25/2017 12:40:58 PM
<![CDATA[Netanyahu says to delay settlement planning committee meet]]>
During a security cabinet meeting on Sunday, Netanyahu told ministers the meeting of the Civil Administration Planning Committee would be put off for another week or two in order to avoid friction with the White House during Jason Greenblatt’s visit.

Greenblatt’s trip comes after US President Donald Trump met with both Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.

The White House on Sunday said his visit is meant to “continue the peace track” and is “part of the administration’s quiet, steady discussions towards peace.”]]>
9/25/2017 12:37:35 PM
<![CDATA[Credit Agricole to move European govt bonds trading to Paris this month]]>
“To achieve critical mass, Credit Agricole CIB has decided to concentrate its euro flow rates market making capabilities in Paris,” said the spokeswoman.

“Therefore the European government bonds trading platform currently based in London will be relocated, as of September 2017, to Credit Agricole CIB in Paris where it will be positioned at the heart of our euro swaps, repo and inflation focused activities,” she said.

French bankers have pledged to create 1,000 jobs in Paris as part of a plan to shift their operations out of London once Britain leaves the European Union.

However, despite efforts by the French government to attract London banks after Brexit, international banks so far have mostly chosen Frankfurt as their EU hub.]]>
9/25/2017 12:35:06 PM
<![CDATA[ABB buys GE business for $2.6 billion in bet it can boost margins]]>
Zurich-based ABB sees potential for annual cost benefits of $200 million with the deal, which includes an agreement for long-term use of GE’s brand and a strategic partnership. In 2016, the GE business had sales of $2.7 billion.

The GE products include circuit breakers, switchgear, components for lighting control and power supply equipment for facilities including data centers. ABB’s portfolio includes similar products.

ABB is seeking to better penetrate the North American market and gain access to GE’s larger installed base of electrical installations worldwide.

ABB said the business had been “an unloved child” and pledged to upgrade aging products with its own technology to help arrest a declining U.S. market share.

ABB is suspending its $3 billion share buyback program as part of the deal, which will bolster its position as the second-biggest supplier of electrical components behind France’s Schneider Electric.

ABB is also wagering on being able to cut costs and boost profitability at the Georgia-based GE unit.

“The key rationale of the integration is, first we will make this business better. And then afterwards, we will make this business bigger and better,” said ABB Chief Executive Ulrich Spiesshofer.

ABB expects integration costs of $400 million.

The GE unit’s operating earnings before interest, taxes and amortization (EBITA) are just 6 percent of sales, less than half the 15 percent operating margin at ABB’s comparable Electrification Products division.

Spiesshofer said he agreed to the transaction only after striking a supply partnership where ABB and GE will increase buying and selling from each another.

“Without that, the economics wouldn’t have worked,” he told reporters on a call. “With the supply partnership, the economics at the price of 0.9 times revenue is working.”

GE has been under pressure from activist investor Nelson Peltz’s Trian Fund Management to sell assets and focus on higher-margin businesses.

Some analysts said the price was surprisingly high given the GE business’s low profitability.

“GE Industrial Solutions isn’t in top shape, so ABB has its work cut out for it,” said Zuercher Kantonalbank analyst Richard Frei.

ABB said it would finance the deal -- likely its last for some time -- with cash and did not need to raise equity capital. Its shares were little changed in early trading.

GE had resumed negotiations to sell the business to ABB after moderating its price expectations, people familiar with the matter told Reuters in August.

Credit Suisse and Dyal Co acted as financial advisers to ABB, and Davis Polk & Wardwell provided legal counsel.]]>
9/25/2017 12:34:11 PM
<![CDATA[France to ban glyphosate weedkiller by 2022]]>
Glyphosate is the main component in the best-selling herbicide Roundup produced by the US agro-chemicals giant Monsanto, but there have been concerns it may cause cancer.

The European Commission has proposed extending the license for the use of the chemical for 10 years, which France has said it will vote against and try to block.

"The prime minister... has decided that this product will be banned in France by the end of the government's term, as well as others that are similar and which are a public health threat," government spokesman Christophe Castaner told RMC radio.

Castaner said the government would set aside 5.0 billion euros ($6.0 billion) over President Emmanuel Macron's five-year term to support the development of an alternative to glyphosate.]]>
9/25/2017 12:27:20 PM
<![CDATA[Nearly 50,000 flee amid fears of Bali volcanic eruption]]>
Mount Agung, about 75 kilometres (47 miles) from the tourist hub of Kuta, has been rumbling since August, threatening to erupt for the first time in more than 50 years.

Indonesia's disaster mitigation agency said Monday 48,540 people had fled, although the number was expected to rise because more than 60,000 people lived in the danger zone.

"There are still people who don't want to be evacuated,? Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, a spokesman for the disaster mitigation agency, said at a press conference.

"The reason is firstly, the mountain hasn't erupted yet. Secondly, they are worried about their livestock."

Officials announced the highest possible alert level on Friday following the increasing volcanic activity, and told people to stay at least nine kilometres away from the crater.

Evacuees have packed into temporary shelters or moved in with relatives.

Some 2,000 cows have been also evacuated from the flanks of the volcano.

Nengah Satiya, who left home with his wife three days ago, said he had been returning to the danger zone to tend to his pigs and chickens.

"There are many livestock in our village but nobody is taking them,? Nengah Satiya told AFP. ?We take turns going back to feed them.?

The airport in Bali's capital Denpasar, through which millions of foreign tourists pass every year, has not been affected.

More than 1,000 people died when Mount Agung last erupted in 1963.]]>
9/25/2017 12:25:57 PM
<![CDATA[Japan police plan for sarin attack at 2020 Games]]>
Anti-terrorist forces rushed to a Tokyo rugby venue in a scenario where terrorists had planted a bomb in a nearby building and released the lethal nerve gas sarin inside the stadium.

Local media said about 1,000 people, including bomb disposal experts, took part in the drill, which was also designed to protect venues for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan.

A bag supposedly containing an explosive device was removed with a robotic arm, while special forces trained to deal with biological and chemical agents disposed of the sarin gas before decontaminating the endangered area.

Japan is rapidly developing advanced crime-prevention systems to guard against attacks at the Tokyo Olympics, such as hi-tech gates that can detect tiny explosive particles in a matter of seconds.

The Japanese government and Olympic organisers have also promised to cooperate with overseas law enforcement to tighten borders before the 2020 Games.

Local police are strengthening security at soft targets such as including sports venues, schools and shopping malls to ensure the Tokyo Olympics and the Rugby World Cup a year earlier are hosted safely.

Brazilian police arrested 10 people before last year's Rio Olympics on suspicion of planning a terrorist attack.

Japan prides itself on being one of the world's safest countries but its confidence was badly shaken in 1995 when a doomsday cult released sarin on packed rush-hour subway trains, killing 13 people and injuring thousands.]]>
9/25/2017 12:22:50 PM
<![CDATA[Tokyo governor to head new political party]]>
Former TV anchorwoman Koike, 65, launched the new party called "Kibo no To" (Party of Hope) just hours before Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was expected to call a snap election for as early as October 22.

"I'm launching a new party and I want to be directly involved in it," Koike told reporters, adding that she will remain as Tokyo governor while becoming the head of the new party.

"Japan is facing a difficult time considering the situation in North Korea. Economically, the world is making a big move while Japan's presence is gradually declining," said Koike.

"Can we continue letting (the existing lawmakers) handle politics?"

Koike, who spent nearly two months as defence minister in Abe's first cabinet in 2007, quit the LDP in June to lead the newly-formed Tomin First no Kai (Tokyo Residents First).

This party humiliated Abe and the LDP in local elections in July but commentators say she has not had time to create the necessary foundations at national level.

Abe's conservative LDP party is seen as clear winner of a national vote, with a recent survey showing 44 percent would vote for the current prime minister compared to eight percent for the main opposition Democratic Party.]]>
9/25/2017 12:21:26 PM
<![CDATA[Tourism minister leaves for France to attend Top Resa 2017]]>
The three-day event will be attended by 31,763 travel professionals from 158 countries.

Rashed will be present in the inauguration of the fair and will hold meetings with tourism officials in France.

He will meet with Ehab Badawi, the Egyptian Ambassador in Paris, later today to discuss possible amendments to the Egyptian travel guide map at the French Foreign Ministry.]]>
9/25/2017 12:20:07 PM
<![CDATA[Election won't distract him from tackling North Korea:Japanese PM]]>
North Korea has launched two ballistic missiles and tested what was likely a hydrogen bomb in the past several weeks raising tension in East Asia.

Abe spoke at a press conference to announce his plan to dissolve parliament on Thursday and call a snap election.]]>
9/25/2017 12:16:38 PM
<![CDATA[Abul Gheit meets with Indian FM]]>
The meeting took up aspects of cooperation between the Arab League and India during the current stage in the political, economic and cultural fields, according to a statement by the AL.

The meeting also tackled the Arab-Indian dialogue forum which will be held in New Delhi in 2018.

Abul Gheit asserted the Arab world is looking forward to strong Indian support to the Arab issues topped by the Palestinian cause.

Abul Gheit expects clear Indian support to a two-state solution in Palestine.

Meanwhile, Swaraj said that the Indian stance towards the Palestinian cause did not change.]]>
9/25/2017 12:15:16 PM
<![CDATA[Arab countries call on India to support Palestinian cause]]>
The meeting focused on the political, economic and cultural cooperation between the Arab League and India, and on the ministerial meeting of the Arab-Indian Cooperation Forum that will be held in 2018 in New Delhi, India, to exchange opinions on the Palestinian cause and other common interests, stated the spokesman of the Secretary-General, Mahmoud Afifi.

Aboul-Gheit urged India, which has good relations with Israel, not to reward Israel by supporting its 2019 – 2020 candidates for the membership of the Security Council as Israel does not comply with international legitimate resolutions, added Afifi.

Swaraj has referred that her understanding of the Arabic situation and India’s good relations with Israel will not affect its relation with Arab countries, confirming that the Indian situation towards the Palestinian cause will not change, added Afifi.

The first meeting of Arab-Indian Cooperation Forum was held in Manama, the capital of Bahrain, in 2016 and attended by representatives from 22 Arab League nations besides External Affairs Minister Swaraj and Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar.

It aims to further strengthen economic, trade, and financial cooperation between India and the Arab League countries, affirming the need to achieve a comprehensive and permanent solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict, call on Israel to end its occupation of the Palestinian "Arab" territories and to issue Manama declaration.
9/25/2017 12:06:44 PM
<![CDATA[Bali's rumbling volcano spurs travel warnings from Australia]]>
Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, the United States and the U.K. issued advisories on Monday and at the weekend warning that increased volcanic activity at Mount Agung in eastern Bali could disrupt flights at one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations.

“Given the possible eruption of Mount Agung, Singaporeans should defer non-essential travel to the affected areas at this juncture,” the foreign ministry said in an online statement.

Bali’s international airport was operating normally on Monday, as were tourist spots across the island.

Indonesian authorities have imposed a 12-km (7.5 miles)exclusion zone around the crater.

The National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB) said on Monday that around 62,000 people lived within the “danger zone” around the volcano and that they all needed to evacuate, though so far only 50,00 had moved to the temporary shelters provided in neighboring villages.

“There are some who are staying behind because the volcano hasn’t erupted yet or because of religious beliefs,” said BNPB spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho.

“Our staff are combing the area and urging everyone to evacuate,” he said, speaking at a news conference in the Indonesian capital Jakarta.

Nugroho said Mount Agung has entered a “critical phase”, meaning magma has risen closer to the surface, as indicated by hundreds of shallow volcanic tremors that have rattled the area in recent days.

Evacuees are being housed in makeshift shelters like town halls and school gyms. Host communities were providing food and water, while the central and local governments were providing tents, blankets and other relief.

Officials have urged the public to remain calm amid false reports and videos circulating online of an eruption.

Indonesia, which sits on the so-called Pacific Ring of Fire, has nearly 130 active volcanoes, more than any other country. Many Indonesians live near volcanoes because lava flows can make the surrounding soil and land fertile for farming.]]>
9/25/2017 12:00:57 PM
<![CDATA[Japan zoo names baby panda after fragrant flowers]]>
After showing a video clip of the baby panda being hugged by proud mum Shin Shin, Koike explained that the name Xiang Xiang -- derived from the Chinese character for "fragrance" -- was chosen from among more than 320,000 suggestions from the public.

The naming of Xiang Xiang threatened to overshadow strong speculation that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe would call a snap election. It provided welcome light relief after weeks of tension over North Korean nuclear tests and missile launches.

Shin Shin gave birth at Tokyo's Ueno zoo on June 12, when Xiang Xiang weighed a fragile 100 grams and was tiny enough to fit into a human palm.

Shin Shin, who mated with Ri Ri in February, had previously given birth in 2012 –- the zoo's first panda delivery in 24 years -- only for the cub to die from pneumonia six days later.

Zookeepers have since given the pandas some private space in a bid to create an environment for the bashful creatures to mate successfully -- a notoriously difficult process.

Until recently considered an endangered species, it is estimated that around 2,000 giant pandas remain in the wild, in three provinces in central China.]]>
9/25/2017 11:56:52 AM
<![CDATA[Iraqi Kurds shrug off threats to stage independence referendum]]>
The vote, expected to deliver a comfortable "yes" for independence, is not binding. However, it is designed to give Massoud Barzani, who heads the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), a mandate to negotiate the secession of the oil producing region with Baghdad and neighbouring states.

For Iraqi Kurds - the largest ethnic group left stateless when the Ottoman empire collapsed a century ago - the referendum offers a historic opportunity despite the intense international pressure to call it off.

"We have seen worse, we have seen injustice, killings and blockades," said Talat, waiting to cast a vote in the regional capital of Erbil, as group of smiling women, in traditional colourful Kurdish dress, emerged from the school showing their fingers stained with ink, a sign that they voted.

The Kurds also say the vote acknowledges their crucial contribution in confronting Islamic State after it overwhelmed the Iraqi army in 2014 and seized control of a third of Iraq.

But with roughly 30 million ethnic Kurds scattered over international borders across the region, Tehran and Ankara fear the spread of separatism to their own Kurdish populations.

The U.S. State Department warned the KRG last week that "holding the referendum in disputed areas is particularly provocative and destabilizing."

The KRG is holding the referendum not only in the long-standing Kurdish autonomous region of Iraq, but also in wider areas in the north of the country into which its forces have advanced in the fight to defeat Islamic State. These areas also have large non-Kurdish populations.

The Turkish Foreign Ministry said Ankara did not recognise the referendum and would view its outcome as null and void, adding that the Iraqi Kurdish government was threatening the peace and stability of Iraq and the whole region.

Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said that his government was evaluating steps regarding its border gates with northern Iraq and air space in response to the vote.

Ankara would make decisions in more direct talks with the Iraqi central government after the referendum, adding that economic, political, diplomatic and military steps were being discussed, he said in an interview with Turkish broadcasters.

Ankara's forces are again fighting a Kurdish insurgency in Turkey following the collapse of a peace process.


Polling stations opened their doors at 8:00 a.m. (0500 GMT) and should close at 6:00 p.m. The final results should be announced within 72 hours.

The voting is open to all registered residents, Kurds and non-Kurds, in the Kurdish-held areas of northern Iraq aged 18 and over, according to the referendum commission.

The commission estimates the number of eligible voters at 5.2 million, including those living abroad and who started casting electronic ballots two days ago.

Voters should tick yes or no on the ballot asking them just one question in Kurdish, Turkish, Arabic and Assyrian: "do you want the Kurdistan Region and Kurdistani areas outside the (Kurdistan) Region to become an independent country?"

Iran declared a ban on direct flights to and from Kurdistan on Sunday, while Baghdad asked foreign countries to stop direct oil trading with autonomous region and demanded that the KRG hands over control of its international airports and border posts with Iran, Turkey and Syria.

Tehran supports Shi'ite groups who have been ruling or holding security and government positions in Iraq since the U.S.-led invasion which toppled Saddam Hussein in 2003.

Opposition to the vote simmered among non-Kurdish populations in areas disputed by the KRG and Baghdad, and mainly the multi-ethnic oil-rich region of Kirkuk.

"Iraq is against the Kurds, so are the Turks, the Iranians, the whole Arab region and Europe. They are going to live in a cage," said Mohammed Mahdi al-Bayati, a Shi'ite Turkmen and a local leader of the Iranian-backed Badr Organisation paramilitary group in Tuz Khurmato, south of Kirkuk.

In Sulaimaniya, a bastion for political groups opposed to Barzani, queues in front of the polling stations were shorter than those in Erbil, and there were fewer signs and billboards celebrating the referendum, reflecting resentment that a yes vote could be seen as a plebiscite for the Kurdish leader.

"I will not vote, the referendum is not good, it could be dangerous because of the threat from Turkey and Iran," said a shop owner of Sulaimaniya, Ali Ahmed.

Despite Turkey's threatened retaliation, it has so far kept the Kurdish oil export pipeline that crosses its territory open.

After World War One, the victorious powers Britain and France carved up the Ottoman empire leaving the Kurds scattered mainly over four countries: Iraq, Iran, Turkey and Syria.

All of them suffered persecution and were often denied the right to speak their language. Those in Iraq were uprooted under Saddam Hussein's regime and suffered an attack using chemical weapons.

Syria is embroiled in a devastating civil war and its Kurds are pressing ahead with their own self-determination.]]>
9/25/2017 11:54:57 AM
<![CDATA[UAE investments in Egypt improve, trade balance post surplus ]]>
Kabil issued the statement as he headed to Abu Dhabi Monday morning, along with President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi, and also accompanied by an official delegation to discuss bilateral and economic cooperation with the UAE government.

"The UAE has topped the list of investing countries in Egypt as they are currently investing a total value of $6.2 billion in 868 projects in the sectors of communications, banking, real estate developing and tourism," Kabil said.

Emirati investments in Egypt have seen major development, especially after announcing the participation of UAE companies in cultivating 20 million palms as part of Egypt's national project to reclaim one million feddans, the minister added.
Egypt's exports to the UAE rose 7 percent to $1.204 billion in 1H of 2017 compared to $1.127 billion in the year-ago period.

The exported products included electric appliances, furniture, vegetables, fruits, medical supplies, iron and steel.

"The tangible increase in exports to the UAE came as a result of continuous efforts to promote Egyptian products in international markets," Kabil said, highlighting that Egyptian items are competing in Emirati markets due to their prices and quality.
9/25/2017 11:49:47 AM
<![CDATA[Around 68,000 German tourists visited Hurghada in September]]>

The German tourists amounted to 70 percent of all tourists that arrived to Hurghada.

According to statistics issued by the Egyptian Travel Agents Associations (ETTA), 12,000 Ukrainian tourists also visited Hurghada, coming in second place.

Meanwhile, Czech tourist numbers came in third place, recording nearly 9,600, while ETTA's statistics referred that English tourists came in fourth place.

Chairman of the Egyptian General Tourist Guides Syndicate in the Red Sea, Bashar Abou-Taleb, stressed that German tourists' numbers are still on top of all other tourists from other nationalities who visited Hurghada, noting that the German tourists' arrival recoded 70 percent of total arrivals.

"There are German tourists who come specifically to the Red Sea to go diving on the coral reefs and to try other activities," Abou-Taleb said.
9/25/2017 11:47:39 AM
<![CDATA[Iran’s 1988 scandal must be investigated: Former Italian min]]>
He added in statements on Thursday to the UAE-owned newspaper, al-Ain, that what happened this year by the Iranian regime is not something that can be easily forgotten. “This is crucial regarding the credibility of the international community and its justice. We have to get those victims’ rights back to their families and bring responsible to the right punishment,” Terzi said.

He affirmed that at least seven of the Iranian officials who were involved in this massacre are still serving within the Iranian regime, “which is not a coherent situation.”

Terzi added that the Iranian regime has to commit to the international obligations of human rights, as the time has come for the international public opinion to know and understand the Iranian role in the region and how it affects the region’s stability.

Giulio Terzi di Sant'Agata served as Italy’s Foreign Affairs Minister since November 16, 2011, until March 26, 2013.

9/25/2017 11:39:56 AM
<![CDATA[British actor Fiennes given Serbian passport]]>
The decision to grant honorary citizenship to the 54-year-old English star was reached earlier this month by the government of Prime Minister Ana Brnabic.

"I never thought I would become a Serb and now it seems that I am one," Fiennes said in Serbian during a brief ceremony after President Aleksandar Vucic presented him with the passport and an ID card.

"We Serbs are happy to have you as a friend and now we have you as our compatriot," Vucic told Fiennes.

Fiennes, a two-time Oscar nominee, has featured in some 30 movies including in "Schindler's List", "The English Patient", "Skyfall" and "Spectre."

He is currently in Belgrade shooting a movie about legendary ballet dancer Rudolph Nureyev after filming in Serbia in 2010 his debut movie as director -- "Coriolanus" -- an adaption of Shakespeare's play.

Fiennes is "promoting Serbia... through his artistic work and business activities", Brnabic told the Politika daily earlier this month.

"He became a genuine friend and promoter of our country and thus undoubtedly deserved honorary citizenship," she said.]]>
9/25/2017 11:38:20 AM
<![CDATA[Stevie Wonder kneels as he leads anti-poverty concert]]>
On a balmy late summer night, thousands converged on Central Park for the live-broadcast Global Citizen Festival which hands out tickets for free to fans who take actions such as petitioning their governments to support development assistance.

With President Donald Trump proposing sweeping aid cuts, the concert had set a goal of building political momentum in the world's largest donor nation. But in a deeply divided United States, another Trump controversy came to the forefront.

Wonder took the stage and knelt, emulating a gesture popularized by NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick during the national anthem to denounce racial injustice. Trump on Friday angrily denounced such protests, using profanity to demand that teams fire the athletes.

"Tonight, I'm taking a knee for America," the blind soul legend said as took to the ground, his son Kwame Morris clutching his arm.

Wonder also voiced worry over the increasingly personal venom between Trump and North Korean strongman Kim Jong-Un.

"We could lose the ultimate video game -- of life -- losing sight that weapons are real, and rhetoric is dangerous, whether it be from a superpower in North America or a superpower in North Korea," Wonder said.

Wonder jammed through more than an hour of his best-loved songs before turning his ever-powerful belting voice to the 1985 charity singalong "We Are the World" as well as "Imagine," the peace anthem by John Lennon who was assassinated a short stroll away.

The 67-year-old Wonder closed by bringing up a visibly star-struck Pharrell Williams, singing together a funk-heavy take of "Get Lucky," which Williams co-wrote for Daft Punk, as well as the younger artist's ode to optimism "Happy."

- Green Day take aim -

The diverse but heavy-hitting lineup also featured chart-topping electronic duo The Chainsmokers, rising soul star Andra Day, folk rockers The Lumineers and young Canadian pop songwriter Alessia Cara -- who, in a feat of organization, also performed Saturday in Toronto at the Invictus Games for wounded soldiers and veterans.

Punk rock greats Green Day injected politics as well, with frontman Billie Joe Armstrong weaving Trump into the lyrics of "American Idiot," the band's high-octane 2004 indictment of US media culture.

Green Day turned down the volume for a second set of "Wake Me Up When September Ends" and "Good Riddance (Time Of Your Life)," set to a slideshow from UNICEF to show the still severe human impact of AIDS.

French President Emmanuel Macron addressed the festival by video, promising to help raise more than $1 billion for the Global Partnership for Education before a February 8 conference in Senegal.

The group brings together the public and private sectors to expand schools -- seen as critical to reducing poverty.

"It's all about education precisely to fight against terrorism, fundamentalism," said Macron, introduced by Senegal's ambassador to the United Nations which is holding its annual General Assembly.

"It's all about education to help women to build their lives, to help people to have a decent life."

The partnership has a goal of $3.1 billion in funding for 2018 through 2020, of which $2 billion has already been committed.

- Pressure to stop cuts -

Denmark's minister for development cooperation, Ulla Tornaes, announced to the festival that her government would next year double to $110 million its international funding for women's sexual and reproductive health.

"When some countries stop fighting for women's rights, we intensify ours," she said to applause.

Trump, as part of his "America First" ideology, has proposed slashing foreign aid by one-third although he faces stiff opposition in Congress.

Aid advocates point out that extreme poverty has fallen by half since 1990, although more than 750 million people live on less than $1.90 a day, according to the World Bank.

Representative Charlie Dent, a leading moderate in Trump's Republican Party, said that Global Citizen had triggered some 400,000 calls to the US Congress to preserve aid -- and voiced hope the pressure would work.

"Foreign assistance is good for humanity and it advances America's interests around the world," Dent told the festival.]]>
9/25/2017 11:36:22 AM