Top News: Initial Results of Egypt’s Run-off Vote Show Parties Gain Firm Footing

Egyptian political parties appear to have secured a large number of individual seats contested in the country’s parliamentary election runoff. Preliminary results show that parties gained over half of the 226 seats contested by individual candidates in the vote. The Free Egyptians Party said it won thirty-six seats, the most out of the political parties contesting the individual seats. Mostaqbal Watan came in second with thirty seats. The Wafd Party won seventeen, according to its Media Advisor Yasser Hassan. The liberal Egyptian Social Democratic Party secured three seats and the Nour Party won ten seats, mostly in the governorates of Beheira and Alexandria. Nour Party chairman Younis Makhyoun said he expects the party to win more seats in the second round of the elections. Al Masry Al Youm reported that individuals who served as members of parliament under former President Hosni Mubarak won nearly 30 percent of individual seats in the first round of the elections. Secretary General of Egypt’s House of Representatives Khaled al-Sadr said on Thursday that candidates who won seats will be able to obtain their parliament membership cards beginning on November 3. Meanwhile, High Elections Committee Chairman Ayaan Abbas said that voter turnout abroad in the runoffs was 2.9 percent, with 19,835 Egyptians casting votes in the runoffs. [Ahram Online, DNE, 10/29/2015]


Egypt Central Bank leaves main interest rates unchanged
The Egyptian Central Bank (CBE) kept its benchmark interest rates on hold at a meeting of its Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) on Thursday as it balanced the need to keep inflation in check and the need to stimulate the economy. “The MPC judges that the key central bank of Egypt rates are currently appropriate give the balance of risks surrounding inflation and gross domestic product outlooks,” the CBE said. Thursday also marked the last MPC meeting that will be held under CBE Governor Hisham Ramez, whom Tarek Amer will replace on November 26. [Reuters, Ahram Online, DNE, 10/29/2015]

EU grant to Egypt worth 68 million euros for the delivery of natural gas
Egypt and the European Union (EU) will sign an agreement on November 3 to deliver natural gas to homes with a grant worth 68 million euros during the visit of Vice-President of the European Commission Federica Mogherini to Cairo, according to the Minister of International Cooperation Sahar Nasr. She also anticipated the signing of another agreement with the EU regarding the third phase of the third line of the Metro with a grant worth 40 million euros by mid-November. Nasr added that an agreement is expected to be signed regarding the grant for the sanitation project in Kafr al-Sheikh, worth 32 million euros, and the project to strengthen children’s access to schools and risk reduction worth 30 million euros, by the end of this year. [DNE, 10/29/2015]

Also of Interest

  • Dollar officially stable at EGP 8.03, experts expect it to stay fixed until end of 2015 | DNE
  • Imports and products will be rationed within limits of international obligations, says Kabil | DNE
  • EGP 20.89 billion in net profit in Egyptian market in June according to CBE | DNE
  • Egypt’s strategic wheat reserves to last until mid-April says Supply Minister | Reuters
  • First coal-using electricity station to be established in March with USD 3 billion | SIS
  • EFSA chief says EGP 449 billion market capital of Egyptian Exchange | SIS
  • Egypt’s industrial sector struggles with growing Chinese presence | Al Monitor
  • Egypt imports wheat four times in October for subsidized bread production | Cairo Post


Conference on violence against women to be held in Cairo
Cairo University’s Faculty of Medicine will hold its sixth annual “Violence Against Women” conference on November 1 in collaboration with the Forensic Institute of the University of Hamburg, Germany. A number of representatives from international rights organizations, Arab and foreign governments, and aid organizations will attend the conference alongside medical students. Representatives from the International Criminal Court, the International Red Cross Committee, Doctors Without Borders, Egypt’s National Council for Women, and Egypt’s Interior Ministry, among others, are scheduled to attend. “Violence against women is a serious societal issue that has a negative impact on the individuals and the society which hampers development movement. The aim of the conference is to develop a clear strategy to overcome this phenomenon,” head of the conference Dr. Dina Shoukry said. Meanwhile, Egyptian television program Sabaya Al-Kheir was suspended on Friday after advertisers began to pull their support in response to anchor Reham Saeed’s criticisms of a woman who was sexually harassed. [AMAY, Cairo Post, 10/30/2015]

Also of Interest

  • Activist Wael Ghoneim admits naivety in post-2011 outlook | Egypt Independent
  • Antiquities minister to inaugurate three tombs in Luxor | AMAY
  • Security cordon set around Giza Pyramids for Yanni’s Dream Concert | Cairo Post
  • Azhar University suspends three students for lighting fireworks on campus | Cairo Post
  • Detainee dies of heart attack at Talbiya police station | Cairo Post


Six security members injured in North Sinai blast
Six security personnel were injured in an explosion targeting an armored security vehicle in Egypt’s North Sinai city of al-Arish, state affiliated news agency MENA reported. A security source told MENA that the explosion was caused by a bomb planted to specifically target security forces in the city. The explosion injured one policeman and five military members, all of whom were rushed to the nearest hospital. This comes after the Egyptian Armed Forces spokesperson announced that the army had gained “full control” over the North Sinai areas of al-Arish, Rafah, and Sheikh Zuwaid after a successful campaign against militants. [Ahram Online, 10/29/2015]


Egypt receives last batch of F-16 fighter jets from 2009 US military deal
Egypt received on Wednesday the last batch of F-16 fighter jets, part of a $3.2 billion military deal that Egypt signed with the US in 2009 for twenty aircraft. The US Embassy in Cairo highlighted in a statement that Ambassador Stephen Beecroft and senior defense official Charles Hooper joined Air Marshal Younes al-Masri and other senior Egyptian military officials in a ceremony at the Cairo West Air Force Base to receive the last four F-16 Block 52 “Fighting Falcon” fighter jets delivered by the United States to the Egyptian Air Force. Major General Hooper described the advanced F-16 fighter jet as a “vital multi-role aircraft that will provide the Egyptian people greater security and a powerful asset in the fight against terrorism.” The original military deal stipulated that Egypt would receive a total of twenty F-16 Block 52 aircraft, eight of which the United States had delivered in 2013, but aid was suspended after the delivery of the aircraft. The US resumed military aid to Egypt in March 2015, declaring that it would send the remaining fighters before the end of the year. Egypt received eight F-16 fighter jets in July 2015. [Ahram Online, DNE, Aswat Masriya, SIS, Cairo Post, 10/29/2015]

Also of Interest

  • Practices of Israeli settlers like those of ISIS says Palestinian ambassador in Cairo | Ahram Online
  • Sisi, Niger president discuss boosting bilateral ties | SIS
  • Sisi invites Indian Prime Minister to visit Egypt | SIS
  • Sisi orders deportation of two Indian convicts | Cairo Post
  • Saudi Arabia deports thirty-three Egyptians for violating residency laws | Cairo Post
  • Sisi to deliver IISS Manama Dialogue keynote address | Cairo Post