US Embassy Clashes Sept 13

President Mohamed Morsy condemned on Thursday the amateur film which many see as offensive to Prophet Mohamed and Islam and which is prompting protests across the region. Morsy called the Prophet a red line that should not be crossed, and said he supported peaceful protest but not attacks on embassies. 


Morsy condemns film, pledges to protect US Embassy staff

President Mohamed Morsy condemned on Thursday the amateur film which many see as offensive to Prophet Mohamed and Islam and which is prompting protests across the region. Morsy called the Prophet a red line that should not be crossed, and said he supported peaceful protest but not attacks on embassies. Egyptian Interior Minister Ahmed Gamaleddin visited the parameters of the US embassy Thursday. The minister inspected security forces deployed in the area, praising their efforts against what he called "protesters’ provocations." He also called on security personnel to show restraint when dealing with demonstrators. [Egypt Independent, EGYNews (Arabic), 9/13/2012]


Former Egypt PM Nazif handed 3 year prison term for graft

Former Egyptian prime minister Ahmed Nazif was handed a three-year prison sentence on Thursday after being found guilty of using his political authority to boost his wealth. Nazif, who led Egypt’s cabinet between 2004 and 2011, was also fined LE9 million ($1.5 million). His two sons, Sherif and Khaled, were also fined. [Ahram Online, Shorouk (Arabic), 9/13/2012]

Former Head of State Security Investigations released, trial postponed until November 10 

The Cairo Criminal Court postponed the trial of 41 police officers, led by Major General Hassan Abdel Rahman, the former Head of State Security until November 10. They are facing charges of destroying confidential security documents in the way of the January 2011 uprising. [EGYNews (Arabic), 9/13/2012] 


EU pledges 500m euro for Egypt conditional on IMF agreement

The European Union offered Egypt macroeconomic assistance of 500 million euros, as well as between 150 and 200 million euros towards economic recovery, the president of the European Commission said on Thursday. Jose Manuel Barroso said the macroeconomic aid would be granted on condition that the country reaches an agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). [Ahram Online, Egypt Independent, 9/13/201]

Public debt swelled, IMF loan pivotal, says finance minister. Islamists reject it 

Finance Minister Momtaz al-Saeed told the Shura Council on Wednesday that Egypt is in desperate need of the International Monetary Fund loan, and that the public debt has swelled. The minister also said the government has been unable to collect LE60 billion for years. At the same time, Egyptian parliamentarians have renewed their attacks on government plans to take a $4.8 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund, with some Islamist figures claiming such borrowing is against religious law. Several MPs said an IMF loan would involve ursury, a practice forbidden by Islamic strictures [Egypt IndependentAhram Online, 9/13/2012].  


70 injured so far at US embassy clashes in Cairo: Health ministry

Seventy people have been injured during ongoing protests outside the US embassy in Cairo, the Egyptian Ministry of Health said Thursday. Clashes erupted at the embassy late Wednesday between around 200 protesters and security forces. Some of the protesters – most of whom are young men without beards, unlike many of the protesters on Tuesday – were also hurling petrol bombs at the CSF, who replied with tear gas in an attempt to disperse the crowd. An anonymous protester said he demands that the US ambassador to Egypt be expelled and measures against the screening of the film be taken. The US embassy is preparing to raise the walls surrounding the embassy. 

[Ahram Online, Egypt IndependentEgyNews (Arabic), 9/13/2012]

Revolutionary Youth Union files lawsuit to block rights council formation

The Union of Revolutionary Youth filed a lawsuit Wednesday at an administrative court to halt the president’s decision to form the National Council for Human Rights, asserting that his decree "did not conform to the proper standards and basis for selection [of members]."Union spokesperson Tamer al-Qadi, the plaintiff, told Al-Masry Al-Youm that the selection of the council members was based on "the political interests of the Muslim Brotherhood. [Egypt Independent, 9/12/2012]


Obama: Egypt no ally but no enemy either

Egypt is neither an ally nor an enemy of the United States, President Barack Obama said Wednesday in the wake of a violent protest at the US embassy in Cairo. "I don’t think that we would consider them an ally, but we don’t consider them an enemy," Obama said in excerpts of an interview with Telemundo aired by MSNBC. "Certainly in this situation, what we’re going to expect is that they are responsive to our insistence that our embassy is protected, our personnel is protected," Obama said. "And if they take actions that indicate they’re not taking those responsibilities, as all other countries do where we have embassies, I think that’s going to be a real big problem." [Ahram Online/AFP, Ahram (Arabic), 9/13/2012]

Morsi departs Cairo on Rome-Brussels tour

Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi left Cairo Wednesday evening to Rome for a two-day Europe tour. He will meet with his Italian counterpart Giorgio Napolitano and Italian Prime Minister Mario Monty and a group of Italian businessmen to discuss the prospects of increasing Italian investments in Egypt. On Thursday, the president heads to Brussels to meet with Belgian Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo. This is Morsi’s first visit to Europe since taking office on 30 June. [Ahram Online, Ahram (Arabic), 9/13/2012] 

Saudi businessmen intend to invest in Egypt, says minister

Trade and Industry Minister Hatem Saleh said at a meeting with the Egyptian-Saudi Business Council Wednesday that there are Saudi companies that are interested in setting up projects in Egypt, particularly in petrochemicals and agriculture. Prime Minister Hisham Qandil met with Tawfik Rabie, the Saudi Trade Minister to discuss ways to develop trade and investment relations between the two countries. [Egypt Independent, Shorouk (Arabic), 9/13/2012]

Photo Credit: AP