April 2014



Tue, 23 Dec 2014 - 11:07 GMT


Tue, 23 Dec 2014 - 11:07 GMT

[caption id="attachment_79820" align="alignright" width="300"]Mideast Egypt Cairo University[/caption] 2 Two bombs explode simultaneously around noon outside Cairo University and a third explosion detonates approximately two hours later. The initial explosions, outside of Cairo University’s Faculty of Engineering, fatally wound Director of Western Giza Investigations Tariq al-Mirjawi and injure five others. All three devices are improvised explosive devices embedded in trees located directly across from the University’s main gate. Activist group Students Against the Coup (SAC), which has been organizing demonstrations across campuses nationwide, declares, “SAC holds the officials of the Ministry of Interior responsible for the security vacuum present that allows for such senseless violence to occur.”

3 Lebanese starlet Haifa Wehbe’s film Halawet Rouh is released, pulling in nearly LE 1 million at the box office before being pulled from the big screen for containing excessive use of sexual innuendo. The decision to suspend screening over the film’s storyline and scenes deemed

[caption id="attachment_79821" align="alignright" width="300" class=" "]Haifa Wehbe’s film Halawet Rouh Haifa Wehbe’s film Halawet Rouh[/caption]

sexually provocative comes down from Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab who orders the nation’s censorship board to re-evaluate it before it can be shown again. Censorship head Ahmed Awaad, who had approved the film for release, resigns in protest of what he deems the “prime minister’s inappropriate interference” with his office.

4 Islamic theorist Mohammed Qotb dies in Jeddah at age 95. The renowned and controversial thinker was brother to Sayed Qotb, the prominent Muslim Brotherhood leader executed in 1966 for plotting to assassinate then-President Gamal Abdel-Nasser. After his brother’s execution, Mohamed fled to Saudi Arabia, becoming a university professor and publishing many books on Islam. He also edited and published Sayed’s books and was known to be an influence for Osama bin Laden while he was in Saudi Arabia. Among his seminal works are Studies in the Human Pysche and Doubts Around Islam. 4 A longstanding dispute triggers clashes in Aswan between the Nubian Al-Daboudeya and Al-Halayel tribes, resulting in the death of three people. The following day another 20 people are killed and 50 are injured in continuing violence. The dispute forces Egyptian police to request reinforcements to quell hostilities. Despite the heightened security presence, violence is renewed the following day and results in two more deaths and five others wounded. Governor of Aswan Mostafa Yousra calls on the army to intervene, while train services are discontinued, local schools shut down and classes suspended at Aswan University. Grand Imam of Al Azhar Ahmed El-Tayyeb travels from Cairo to head up a reconciliation committee between the warring tribes, who agree to a three-day ceasefire in an attempt to forge a permanent truce. [caption id="attachment_79822" align="alignleft" width="198"]ismail Hazem Salah Abu Ismail[/caption] April 5 Beloved radio announcer Mahmoud Sultan dies at age 74 after breaking his leg at home. Sultan was a gifted news anchor and was known for his narration of popular documentary show Alam El-Hayawan (Animal Kingdom). 6 Hazem Salah Abu Ismail, Salafi preacher and one-time presidential hopeful, is sentenced by the Cairo Criminal Court to seven years in high-security prison for forging official documents for his 2012 campaign, related to his mother having an American passport. 6 Wearing dark aviator sunglasses, outspoken lawyer and chairman of the Zamalek Club Mortada Mansour announces his short-lived campaign for president. Unafraid to speak his mind, often with language not typically associated with the office of the president, Mansour adds some flair to an otherwise very conservative campaign. Although he collects 20,000 recommendation forms, the lawyer ultimately withdraws from the race after less than two weeks and indicates his decision is due to a sign he received from God while on the metro. He throws his weight behind Al-Sisi. 8 Amid a nationwide wave of university protests and violent clashes with security forces, Ministry of Interior Spokesman General Hany Abdel Latif announces, “There will be no more protests on university campuses. Universities will be for education only.” The unrelenting protest violence throughout the semester forces Cairo University to approve continued police presence on campus and to ban 173 students from taking final exams during May. [caption id="attachment_79823" align="alignright" width="300"]Bassem Youssef Satirist Bassem Youssef[/caption] 14 The Cairo Court for Urgent Matters upholds the government’s designation of the militant group ABM as a terrorist organization. The Sinai-based militant group has claimed responsibility for numerous attacks on government and civilian institutions throughout Egypt. 21 Seventeen drown in separate incidents across the nation while celebrating Sham El-Nessim, according to the Ministry of Health. 28 MBC Masr announces satirical TV show El Bernameg is suspended until May 30, after the presidential elections. In a statement, management at the Saudi-owned satellite channel say the show has been postponed “so that the Egyptian voters’ orientation and public opinion wouldn’t be influenced.” Popular host Bassem Youssef had earlier announced he was off on Sham El-Nessim vacation, just to assure viewers he was not being pulled off air. [caption id="attachment_79824" align="alignright" width="300" class=" "]John Kerry US Secretary of State John Kerry[/caption]   29 US Secretary of State John Kerry meets with Egyptian Minister of Foreign Affairs Nabil Fahmy to reaffirm previously strong diplomatic ties between both countries. The popular uprising and military removal of former President Mohamed Morsi had created a rift between the two countries, and the meeting in Washington, DC is the first publically announced diplomatic summit between the two countries and a big step toward normalizing relations. Heavily dependent on US financial and military aid, Egypt attempts to fulfill stipulations set forth by congress to restart aid suspended in October 2013, and Kerry is the final arbiter of this stipulation under US law.



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