Egypt’s Ex-President Morsi Sentenced to Twenty years in Prison

Egypt’s ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi was sentenced to twenty years in prison and a five year parole on Tuesday. He was convicted on charges of inciting violence, arresting protesters and physically abusing them, outside the Ittihadiya presidential palace in December 2012.


Talks over electoral coalitions resume
The parliamentary elections’ coalitions were awaiting the amendment of electoral districts law to restart, as political parties resumed from where they left before postponing the elections. The “For the Love of Egypt” coalition, which includes thirteen parties and number of public figures, maintains its core with no withdrawals in the coalition, except for political activist Hazem Abdel Azim, according to the coalition’s coordinator Tarek al-Khouly. Al-Khouly said that the coalition, led by former military general Sameh Seif al-Yazal, is content with its current structure, being “the largest coalition.” He added that any future changes to the coalition will be limited to a party’s withdrawal. The Wafd party announced that it will take part in the elections among the ranks of “For the Love of Egypt.” [DNE, 4/20/2015]

Also of Interest

  • No daylight saving this summer says Egypt’s Prime Minister | Ahram Online, Aswat Masriya
  • Mahlab allocates EGP10 million to ministry of environment | DNE
  • Parliamentary Affairs Minister says electoral laws won’t be sent to State Council this week | EGYNews (Arabic)


Egypt’s ex-president Morsi sentenced to twenty years in prison  
Egypt’s ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi was sentenced to twenty years in prison and a five year parole on Tuesday. He was convicted on charges of inciting violence, arresting protesters and physically abusing them, outside the Ittihadiya presidential palace in December 2012. Twelve other defendants, including Muslim Brotherhood leading figures Mohamed al-Beltagy and Essam al-Erian, and ex-presidential aides, also received twenty-year sentences on the same charges. Ali Gamal Saber and Abdel-Hakim Abdel-Rahman received ten-year sentences. The sentences can be appealed. Morsi and the fourteen other defendants were acquitted of committing premeditated murder and possessing ammunition. Judge Ahmed Youssef issued the verdict and sentence during a brief hearing, as Morsi and other defendants in the case stood in a soundproof glass cage. The court concluded its session by refusing to allow Morsi to address the judges and the public on the basis that “he had rejected the court, and questioned its legitimacy.”  Muslim Brotherhood member and former minister under Morsi, Amr Darrag, said in a statement in Istanbul, “His trial has been a travesty of justice, which has been scripted and controlled by the government and entirely unsupported by evidence.” [Ahram Online, DNE, Reuters, AP, Aswat Masriya, Mada Masr, The Guardian, 4/21/2015]

Al-Masry al-Youm reporters referred to investigation
Five al-Masry al-Youm (AMAY) reporters were transferred to investigations on Monday, just days after publishing a special report on alleged police violations. AMAY, a privately-owned independent daily newspaper, published a seven-paged special report on Sunday, repackaging a set of previously published reports on police violations against protesters, citizens, detainees, and even conscripts. “The reporters’ referral to investigations is nothing but an extension for the crisis,” newly elected Press Syndicate Head Yehia Qallash told Daily News Egypt. The front pages of AMAY and al-Dostour newspapers continued to criticize Egypt’s police Monday. Al-Dostour published on its front page the criminal record of its arrested journalist, arguing that he has not previously been arrested and had no criminal charges on his record. [DNE, 4/21/2015]

Also of Interest

  • Armenian belly dancer Safinaz sentenced to six months for Egypt flag costume | Ahram Online, Egypt Independent, AP
  • Egypt’s administrative prosecution to investigate schoolyard book burning | Ahram Online
  • Rare prison sentence given to sexual harasser in Cairo | DNE
  • Factbox: Egypt’s trials of Morsi, Muslim Brotherhood leaders | Reuters
  • Trial of Badie, 190 others accused of storming “Arab Police Department” in Port Said postponed to May 23| Egypt Independent, EGYNews (Arabic)
  • Q&A on Morsi’s Ittihadiya clashes trial | Mada Masr


Egypt targets $26 billion in tourism revenues by 2020
Egypt expects revenues from the tourism sector to reach $26 billion by 2020, as it implements a strategy to increase the number of tourists visiting annually to twenty million. The plan was presented to Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab by Tourism Minister Khaled Rami. Despite the instability, tourism contributes with 11.3 percent of the gross domestic product and is the source of 7 percent of foreign currency. Even though, tourism revenues rose to $7.5 billion throughout the year 2014, they remain well below the figures prior to the January 2011 uprising. Revenues reached $12.5 billion in 2010, which is often referred to as the “peak year” for tourism in Egypt. [Aswat Masriya, 4/21/2015]

Also of Interest

  • Egypt to launch new grain storage system next week says Minister | Ahram Online
  • Egypt to host ICC Court of Arbitration meetings in October | DNE
  • Businessmen, officials dispute steel protection fees | DNE
  • EFI, CBE meeting on cashless society proposal postponed | DNE
  • Eni reports record oil production in Egypt | Amwal Al Ghad


Thirteen students arrested during clashes at Cairo University
The ministry of interior announced Sunday the arrest of thirteen student protesters with alleged Brotherhood affiliations in clashes at Cairo University. Clashes broke out between Cairo University students and administrative security guards on Sunday after a group of students attempted to climb a fence at the Faculty of Commerce and the administrative security stopped them, according to Mohamed Nagi, a researcher with the Association of Freedom of Thought and Expression. Nine members of the security forces were injured in the clashes, while three students were bruised and taken to hospital. Yahia Mahmoud al-Ghozlan, the son of Brotherhood leader Mahmoud al-Ghozlan, was among those arrested. [DNE, 4/20/2015]

Also of Interest

  • Kuwait sets new conditions for work permits to Egyptians |Egypt Independent
  • Police disperse Brotherhood demonstration in 6th of October City | Egypt Independent
  • ‘Work conditions compare favorably in market’: AUC on workers’ strike | DNE
  • Work with traditional passports extended for Egyptians in four Gulf States | SIS
  • Ibrahim Eissa: Egyptian government mistaken to negotiate with Aboud al-Zomor | Egypt Independent
  • Ibrahim Eissa: ElBaradei’s stance on Raba’a dispersal more honorable than Azhar’s | Egypt Independent
  • Tourism ministry to require electronic visas for Hajj next year | DNE


Two children die as unidentified shell hits North Sinai’s Sheikh Zuweid
Two children were killed Monday in the North Sinai town of Sheikh Zuweid during shelling in the area by unidentified forces. It is not clear whether the shelling was attributed to the armed forces or North Sinai’s militants. Meanwhile, on Tuesday, military raids in North Sinai’s Sheikh Zuweid and Rafah cities left eight suspected militants dead. In related news, the curfew in al-Arish city was reduced from eleven to eight hours, North Sinai governor Abdel-Fattah Harhour announced on Monday. The curfew will be effective 11pm to 6am starting from April 26. [Ahram Online, DNE, 4/21/2015]

Also of Interest

  • Egypt hurt by being completely security-driven | DNE
  • Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis statement asks residents not to cooperate with security forces | AMAY (Arabic)


Canada to issue passport to Al-Jazeera journalist Fahmy
The Canadian government said Monday it will issue a passport to Al-Jazeera English journalist Mohamed Fahmy who remains in Egypt on bail while awaiting trial on terror charges, reversing an earlier decision denying him one. Kevin Menard, a spokesman for Canada’s Immigration Minister, said they are “now in a position to issue Mr. Fahmy a passport despite ongoing legal issues and travel restrictions.” Fahmy, who was born in Egypt and is a naturalized Canadian citizen, was freed from jail in February. He renounced his Egyptian citizenship last year as a condition of any future release from Egypt. Under his bail conditions, Fahmy must check in with police every day and cannot leave Egypt. He said he’s on a no-fly list. [Reuters, AP, The Guardian, 4/21/2015]

Egypt to host international conference on illegal immigration this month
Egypt will host an international conference next week in the tourist resort of Sharm al-Sheikh on solutions regarding illegal immigration. Several European and African countries, as well as international organizations, will take part in the conference held in light of the increasing number of victims drowning while attempting to immigrate every year. Deputy Foreign Minister Hisham Badr said on Monday that the conference will be held on April 23-24. Among the countries attending are Ethiopia, Sudan, Eritrea, South Sudan, the UK, France, Italy, Germany, and Malta. Commissioners from the European Union and the African Union, the United Nations, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the International Organization for Migration, and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime will also be present. [MENA, 4/20/2015]

Also of Interest

  • Pope Tawadros says Armenia visit is spiritual, not political  | Ahram Online
  • Coptic Bishop condemns murder of Ethiopian Christians in Libya | Egypt Independent
  • Iran, Turkey and Qatar excluded from Egypt Quran recitation competition | Ahram Online
  • Egypt Prime Minister in Jakarta for Asian-African summit | Ahram Online, DNE
  • New poll finds Egyptians generally unsupportive of military action in Yemen | DNE, Egypt Independent
  • Sisi discusses with Greek defense minister terror combat efforts | SIS
  • Egyptian, Greek defense ministers discuss military cooperation | DNE
  • Situation in Yemen to be discussed in Shoukry and Faisal’s meeting  | Aswat Masriya
  • Tainted Russian wheat resurfaces in Egypt | Al-Monitor