Egypt’s State Council on Monday approved the draft law on “terrorist entities,” which would allow for the dissolution of these entities and ending their activities.



Egypt’s State Council approves ‘terrorist entities’ draft law
Egypt’s State Council on Monday approved the draft law on “terrorist entities,” which would allow for the dissolution of these entities and ending their activities. The draft law was also approved by the cabinet in November. Article 1 of the new law defines a terrorist entity as any group “practicing or intending to advocate by any means to disturb public order or endanger the safety of the community and its interests or risk its security or harm national unity.” However, the law’s definition of a terrorist organization expands to encompass groups that “occupy public or private buildings, and public facilities” or endorse “damage to the environment or natural materials.” The draft law, however, must be considered by the president, as per Article 156 of the constitution, which states that the president has the power to issue laws by decree. These decrees must be “discussed and approved” by the House of Representatives “within fifteen days from the date the new House convenes.” [DNE, SIS, 12/9/2014]

Egypt’s electoral districts law ready for cabinet
Egypt’s new draft electoral consistencies law is now ready for cabinet approval, Al-Ahram reported on Monday. Transitional Justice Minister Ibrahim al-Heneidy and a committee overlooking the drafting of the law had been working on the long-awaited draft that paves the way for holding parliamentary elections. The cabinet is expected to review the law on Wednesday, with polls slated for the first quarter of 2015. The approved text of the draft law delineates the 231 districts and parliamentary seats available per district.  [Ahram Online, DNE, SIS, EGYNews (Arabic), 12/9/2014]

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Administrative prosecution establishes special department to combat corruption and manage international cooperation | Aswat Masriya (Arabic)
Dostour party considers withdrawal from the road map after Mubarak verdict | Ahram Gateway (Arabic)


“Fabricated” recording of military top brass referred to military prosecution
Egypt’s General Prosecutor referred Tuesday investigations concerning “fabricated” secret recordings of top military brass discussing how to manipulate the legal status of former Islamist president Mohamed Morsi’s detention to military prosecution. Initial investigations showed that the Brotherhood have been using media supported by foreign agendas  to “fabricate” phone calls using advanced technology, the prosecution said in a statement. The general prosecution highlighted that Muslim Brotherhood members have been trying everything possible to influence judges in charge of cases for its top leadership. Prosecutor General Hisham Barakat announced on Tuesday that the Supreme State Security Prosecution’s investigation revealed that the case falls under the military judiciary’s jurisdiction. [Ahram Online, Aswat Masriya, EGYNews (Arabic), 12/9/2014]

Egyptian activist Ahmed Douma jailed three more years for contempt
Egyptian pro-democracy activist Ahmed Douma was sentenced to three years in jail on Tuesday after he accused the judge of bias and denounced his trial on charges of violence against the state as political. During Tuesday’s hearing, Douma accused the judge, Mohamed Nagi Shehata, of posting comments on Facebook criticizing Egypt’s opposition. The comments prompted the judge to sentence Douma to three years in jail and fine him 10,000 Egyptian pounds ($1,399) for “insulting the court.” Last week, Shehata sentenced 185 Muslim Brotherhood supporters to death over an attack on a police station near Cairo last year in which twelve policemen were killed. Shehata also presided over the controversial trial that saw three Al Jazeera journalists jailed for seven to ten years. [Ahram Online, DNE, Egypt Independent, Aswat Masriya, Reuters, 12/9/2014]

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Final decision on 188 ‘Kerdasa’ death sentences postponed | Ahram Online, Aswat Masriya
Syndicate leader acquitted of ‘insulting the president’ | DNE
Morsi “Ittihadiya case” postponed to December 10 | Aswat Masriya (Arabic), EGYNews (Arabic)


Egypt to launch tender for second LNG import terminal
According to an undisclosed source at the Egyptian state gas board, Egypt will open a tender for a second liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal to help address the country’s energy crisis. Egypt has had to become a net energy importer due to foreign firm’s reluctance to invest in the sector before Egypt repays the billions it owes. Egypt has been struggling with high energy bills caused by the fuel subsidies the government provides for its population. The first LNG port is expected to start operating by the end of March. [Reuters, 12/9/2014]

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Egypt tackles embezzlement | Al-Monitor
International oil price reduction to save cash for Egypt’s budget, says Economy professor | DNE
Fifty Italian companies to hold investment talks in Egypt in February, says Italian ambassador | DNE
Egyptians pay tenfold price for slow Internet | Egypt Independent
Regulator extends period of Abraaj bid for Bisco Misr to December 24 | Reuters
EU first trade partner to Egypt, says CBE report | SIS
Egyptian, Slovenian, Danish companies to invest in global logistics center, says supply minister | Aswat Masriya (Arabic)


Rights group moves its programs outside Egypt, calls to revise protest law
The Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS) announced it has decided to move its regional and international programs outside Egypt in light of the ongoing threats to human rights organizations and the declaration of war on civil society. In particular, this move comes after the expiration of the deadline set by the ministry of social solidarity for “unregistered entities” to register under a draconian associations law and the mounting security pressure aimed at shutting out every independent, critical voice from the public sphere. In a special session at the European Parliament in Brussels on Monday, CIHRS director Bahey Eldin Hassan also called on Egyptian authorities to revise the protest law to make it more consistent with the constitution and international standards. Justice Minister Mahfouz Saber, however, said Egypt has no intention to amend the controversial law. “Changing the law will not occur until the parliament is elected,” he said. [DNE, Egypt Independent, Aswat Masriya (Arabic), 12/9/2014]

TV show issues statement after backlash over ‘homosexual den’ episode
Dozens of men were arrested on “perversion” charges in a bathhouse in downtown Cairo’s Ramses area on Sunday. A public prosecutor said they would be held for four days pending a decision on whether to press formal charges of debauchery. Journalist Mona Iraqi, who filmed the security raid and reported on her Facebook page, was accused of violating professional and ethical codes of media coverage, as pictures show that she was filming with her iPhone as the stream of men file past. Iraqi, a presenter on “Al-Mestakhabi” (The Hidden), an investigative journalism show that broadcasts on the privately owned channel Al-Qahera wal Nas, defended her role on her Facebook page that her show was part of a larger campaign to punish deviant sexual behavior as a way to reduce the threat of HIV in Egypt. The cast of “Al-Mestakhabi” also issued a statement stressing its “professionalism” in its investigative coverage. “During the production of this investigative series … we assure we have worked towards achieving the highest degree of accuracy and professionalism in observing international professional, humane and scientific rules,” the cast’s statement said. [Mada Masr,  Reuters, AP, 12/9/2014]

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Mohamed Soltan ‘back from the dead’ | DNE, Egypt Independent
Officers beat detained hunger-striking photojournalist, says AFTE | DNE
State steel company workers resume strike amid government disregard | Egypt Independent
ANHRI slams entry ban on Palestinian filmmaker | Egypt Independent
Six parties to hold press conference to announce unified position against escalation of violence against women | Ahram Gateway (Arabic)


Three policemen gunned down in Sharqiya, one killed
Unidentified assailants fired at a police car on a highway in Sharqiya early Tuesday, killing a police officer and injuring two policemen. The three were in a security patrol on the Cairo-Belbeis Agricultural Road. They approached a suspect car on the road side and were shot by the people inside. The assailants fled the scene. [Ahram Online, Aswat Masriya, 12/9/2014]

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Alleged Brotherhood supporter dies after Alexandria shooting | DNE
Second phase of restriction on houses in Rafah buffer zone starts | Shorouk (Arabic)
Improvised explosive device demolished at Ismailia train station | EGYNews (Arabic)


Foreign embassies ‘exaggerate’ security demands, says Egypt’s FM
The decision of the British embassy to suspend work on Sunday, followed by a similar decision by the Canadian post, prompted fears and questions as to whether the missions have received militant threats. The Australian embassy in Cairo updated its travel advice, warning of possible terrorist attacks against embassies in the capital. In response, Egypt’s foreign ministry spokesman Badr Abdel-Atty said the ministry “will not accept exaggerations in any (security) demands.” He also noted that the suspension of services at the British and Canadian embassies were internal affairs of the two countries, and Egypt spared no effort to protect embassies operating in Egypt.  The United States has not changed its “security posture” on Egypt. “We’re continuing to monitor developments, and Egypt will calibrate our security posture in accordance with the security situation on the ground,” state department spokesperson Jen Psaki said at a daily press briefing on Monday. The German embassy in Cairo will close its visa issuing department on Thursday to hold a workshop and not for security concerns. [Ahram Online, Aswat Masriya, 12/9/2014]

Also of Interest
Sixty-nine illegal Egyptian immigrants intercepted and deported from Libya | EGYNews (Arabic)
WFP restarts food aid for Syrian refugees in Egypt and other countries | Reuters
Egypt cautiously accepts reconciliation with Qatar | Al-Monitor