Top News: Egypt Announces Week of Mourning over Death of Saudi Monarch

The Egyptian presidency declared seven days of mourning over the death of Saudi King Abdullah, who passed away at the age of 91 early Friday. President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi praised the king as a just leader who had devotedly defended pan-Arabism and Islam.


NCHR asks HEC to extend registration period for NGOs to monitor elections
The National Council for Human Rights (NCHR) has asked the High Elections Committee (HEC) to extend the period for receiving requests from non-governmental organizations (NGOs) wishing to monitor the upcoming parliamentary elections. The NCHR said in a statement on Thursday that it has received a number of requests from NGOs calling on the HEC to extend the registration period. [SIS, 1/23/2015]

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Egypt prosecutor orders release of 100 students ahead of 2011 uprising anniversary
Egypt’s public prosecutor on Thursday ordered the release of 100 students arrested over violence-related charges since the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi, ahead of the fourth anniversary of 2011 popular uprising. The prosecutor’s office said in a statement that the move came amid a thorough review of previous detention decisions. It added that the decision to let the detainees walk free was out of “concern for their academic future.” The students have not been formally charged. [Ahram Online, Aswat Masriya, 1/22/2015]

Alaa and Gamal Mubarak leave prison
The sons of former president Hosni Mubarak were freed from prison on bail in the early hours of Friday pending retrial in a corruption case, a prison source said. Alaa and Gamal Mubarak left jail at dawn after the Cairo criminal court ordered their release a day earlier because they had already served the maximum period of eighteen months in pretrial detention. [Ahram Online, AFP, 1/23/2015]


Finance minister: Egypt growth to be “easily north of 4 percent” in 2014-15
Egypt can expect economic growth “easily north of 4 percent” in fiscal year 2014-15, which ends in June, boosted by rising confidence and a windfall from lower oil prices, its Finance Minister Hani Dimian said on Friday. Dimian also told Reuters that the budget deficit for this year would fall to between 10 and 10.5 percent of gross domestic product, down from 12.5 to 12.6 percent in 2013-14. [Reuters, 1/23/2015]

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Woman shot dead in Alexandria protests; Students arrested in Gharbeya
A young woman was shot dead and another injured on Friday amid clashes between Muslim Brotherhood supporters and residents in east Alexandria, a health ministry official said. Clashes broke out between pro-Brotherhood supporters and residents of Miami district east of Alexandria, Alexandria Investigations Head, Sherif Abdel Hamid, said, adding that a number of people were wounded. On Thursday, dozens of Brotherhood supporters in Alexandria also set tires on fire and blocked roads as they clashed with security forces. Islamist protesters threw Molotov cocktails at a police post in the Camp Chezar district in central Alexandria. Demonstrators used fireworks and set tires on fire on a seafront road in the city. Elsewhere, protesters in the nearby Mahatet al-Raml district set alight an armored vehicle parked on the side of the road. Meanwhile, six pro-Muslim Brotherhood students were arrested in Gharbeya governorate over charges of protesting, and incitement of violence. [Aswat Masriya, Ahram Online, 1/22/2015]

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  • Mahmoud Shaaban moved from prison to hospital | Egypt Independent
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Explosion downs electricity pylon in Greater Cairo
An electricity pylon supplying the Haram district of Greater Cairo was downed on Friday in an explosion caused by “unknown parties,” electricity ministry spokesman Mohamed Yamany said. The explosion damaged the trestles of the 220kV tower, causing it to collapse, Yamany added. The attack, which took place at dawn, resulted in brief cuts to affected areas as necessary diversions were carried out to prevent power shortages. Repairs should take between two weeks and cost 1 million Egyptian pounds (around $141,000). [Ahram Online, 1/23/2015]

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Egypt announces week of mourning over death of Saudi monarch
The Egyptian presidency declared seven days of mourning over the death of Saudi King Abdullah, who passed away at the age of 91 early Friday. President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi praised the king as a just leader who had devotedly defended pan-Arabism and Islam. Sisi decided to cut his current visit to Switzerland and fly to Saudi Arabia to participate in the funeral procession, but was unable to attend the Friday funeral after bad weather grounded his helicopter in Davos. Meanwhile, Egypt’s government postponed celebrations marking the January 25 revolution in mourning for Abdullah, a cabinet spokesman said on Friday. Similarly, the interior ministry said it would call off its celebrations of police day, also on 25 January, as the country declared a week of mourning for the late monarch. Egypt’s ministry of foreign affairs lowered the flag to half-mast on Friday. [Aswat Masriya, Ahram Online, Mada Masr, DNE, SIS, 1/23/2015]

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