Top News: Prosecutors summon six new defendants in Port Said massacre case

Ultras Ahram Online.jpg

Judicial sources have said that prosecutors are summoning six new defendants in the Port Said Massacre case, in which 73 suspects stand accused of involvement in the violence that killed over 70 football fans following a Premier League match in Port Said Stadium last February.


Jamaa al-Islamiya criticizes Brotherhood and opposition, considers joining Centrist Coalition
Jama’a al-Islamiya criticized Tuesday the Muslim Brotherhood, saying that the administration was not working in favor of the homeland. The group also warned the opposition against resorting to violence during the protests and marches on 25 January. Additionally, an anonymous source revealed that the group is considering joining the Centrist Coalition consisting of 8 parties including Strong Egypt, Ghad al-Thawra and al-Wasat. [Egypt Independent, Shorouk (Arabic), 1/23/2013]

President decrees Port Said massacre victims as revolution martyrs

President Mohamed Morsi has issued a decree defining the victims of the Port Said Stadium massacre as martyrs of the revolution, according to Khaled al-Badawy, secretary general of the National Council of Care for the Revolution Martyrs’ Families and Wounded. At a press conference with presidential spokesperson Yasser Ali on Tuesday, Badawy said the council will now start to make payments the families of these victims in line with their new designation as martyrs of the revolution. [Egypt Independent, Ahram Online, 1/22/2013]

NSF promises female representation if elections contested
At least a third of the National Salvation Front’s (NSF) list candidates will be female if the opposition bloc decides to contest parliamentary elections. NSF member Neveen Mosa’ad made the pledge at a meeting with women’s rights activists on Tuesday in response to criticism that the opposition bloc did not have enough female representation. Activists at the meeting also criticised the NSF for slow decision-making, not communicating with the street and not supporting Egyptian youth. Hamdeen Sabahy, a firebrand politician who ran for president last year, told Reuters the opposition National Salvation Front coalition could win a parliamentary majority in April if it rises above differences that split its ranks in past elections.[DNE, Reuters, 1/22/2013]

Also of Interest
Salafi party, al Hadaf, to contest for 30% of parliamentary seats | El Watan (Arabic)
Govt signals Saudi bridge project moving forward | Egypt Independent
Administration says national dialogue has not failed | Egypt Independent
Elections commission chooses new secretary general | Egypt Independent


Prosecutors call on Morsi to end prosecutor general crisis
Prosecutors called on President Mohamed Morsi Tuesday to intervene and solve the crisis of the Prosecutor General Talaat Abdallah by instructing justice minister to submit Abdallah’s resignation, which he had previously received, to the Supreme Council of Judges to decide on the matter. A committee of young judges and prosecutors held a meeting Tuesday in Agouza district to follow up on the prosecutor general crisis. They reiterated their rejection to the appointment of Abdallah. [Egypt Independent, 1/22/2013]

Attorney general refers stock market protesters to prosecution

Egyptian Attorney General Talaat Ibrahim has ordered that protesters gathered by the stock market be referred to the general prosecution to take the appropriate measures against them.  Ibrahim had received a complaint that the Ultras protest was disrupting the work of the institution and threatening national security and the economy, reported the Middle East News Agency. [Aswat Masriya, Shorouk (Arabic), 1/23/2013]

Prosecutors summon six new defendants in Port Said massacre case
Judicial sources have said that prosecutors are summoning six new defendants in the  Port Said Massacre case, in which 73 suspects stand accused of involvement in the violence that killed over 70 football fans following a Premier League match in Port Said Stadium last February between Egypt’s leading team, Ahly, and its host, Masry. These new defendants are inspector Khaled Mohamed Namnam, another police officer and four members of the disbanded National Democratic Party. The sources added that investigations had revealed Namnam left the stadium half an hour before the end of the match, and that the fact-finding committee is submitting new evidence that may lead to his conviction.[Egypt Independent, 1/22/2013]

Also of Interest:
El-Hosary military trial postponed | DNE


Tourism union speaks out against fuel subsidy removal plan
The government decision this week to remove subsidies on diesel designated for the tourism sector is a disaster, Khaled al-Mennawy, spokesperson of the Tourism Chambers Union, said Tuesday. The move adds to the difficulties the industry is already facing, Mennawy told CBC television program “Hona al Asema.” He said the decision would mostly affect tourist transport and river cruise ships. [Egypt Independent, 1/22/2013]

Gulf cash buying Egypt’s pound respite – for now  
Financial aid from the Gulf is succeeding in buying Egypt’s government time as it battles to prevent a currency collapse, though Cairo may not be able to afford much more delay in securing a loan from the International Monetary Fund. Officially traded between banks at 6.6350 to the U.S. dollar on Tuesday, the pound has lost about 7 percent of its value in under a month, and now stands 12 percent weaker than it was before the early 2011 uprising against Hosni Mubarak.[Aswat Masriya/Reuters, 1/23/2013]

Also of Interest:
Egypt says tourist numbers rise 17 pct in 2012 | Reuters
Dubai retailer MAF aims to bid for Egypt shop chain Metro in first quarter: CEO Ahram Online/Reuters
Bakeries instructed to stock up on fuel | Egypt Independent
Vodafone backtracks on increase of prepaid cards price | Egypt Independent, Ahram Online


Marsa Matrouh violence injures 80
Police forces on Tuesday resisted groups of residents armed with guns who attempted to break into two police stations and the Anti-Narcotics General Administration offices, according to a local security source. The suspects stole 38 private cars and 16 motorbikes, the same source alleged, adding that security forces have cordoned off the buildings that were attacked. The number of people injured in clashes that broke out between security forces and armed residents in Marsa Matrouh on Tuesday has increased to 80, nearly half of them police. Clashes erupted after a military court convicted two Bedouins of smuggling cigarettes from Libya, each were sentenced to six months in prison. Families of the convicted rallied outside the police station, attempting to set them free. [Egypt Independent, Ahram Online, DNE, 1/23/2013]

Also of Interest:
Rights group says Egypt police behaves like ‘gang’ Ahram Online/AP, DNE
FJP headquarters in Sixth October City attacked | Ahram Online, Egypt Independent
Prosecution orders arrest of Shubra al-Kheima police officer | Egypt Independent


Ultras on roving protest across Cairo
Members of Ultras Ahlawy blocked the Cairo metro on Wednesday afternoon as part of their roving protests to demand a prompt verdict in the Port Said disaster trial. Protesters blocked Cairo’s 6 October Bridge, one of the capital’s main traffic arteries, but normal traffic on the bridge has since resumed.  They had earlier conducted a protest in front of the stock exchange, during which  the head of Egypt’s stock market Mohamed Omran said that the protests by the headquarters will not affect operations. A verdict in the trial was due to be delivered on Saturday, but on Tuesday the justice ministry said the verdict may be delayed in order to hear fresh evidence. Meanwhile in Zamalek, hundreds of hardcore football fans of Zamalek’s Ultras White Knights demonstrated on Tuesday in front of the Alexandria court complex against the arrest of a 14-year-old member of the group on Sunday. [Ahram Online, DNE, 1/23/2013]

Brotherhood marks January 25 uprising anniversary with development drive
Only three days away from the second anniversary of Egypt’s January 25 Revolution, the Muslim Brotherhood has launched a campaign dubbed ‘Building Egypt Together.’ The campaign is sponsored by the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP), the Brotherhood’s political wing. At a press conference in central Cairo on Tuesday, the group’s secretary-general, Mahmoud Hussein, provided details of the initiative. The campaign, which is set to continue until 5 February, incorporates a variety of projects. One key initiative will be to provide free health services to one million Egyptians, renovate 2,000 governmental schools and alleviate hardship by providing subsidised produce. Another initiative will aim to provide one million apartments to low-income citizens. [Ahram Online, Ikhwanweb, DNE, 1/22/2013]

Citizens left without rights

The Egyptian Organisation for Human Rights (EOHR) claimed in its annual report, released Tuesday, persistent violations of citizen’s rights. The 94-page report, released to coincide with the 25 January revolution’s second anniversary, provided a comprehensive account of all the breaches to civil, political and economic rights throughout 2012. Tackling all sections of the newly passed constitution, the EOHR stated that the constitution failed to meet the minimum level of the peoples’ expectations. It also provided a comparison of the 2012 constitution and the 1971 constitution, where the 2012 constitution lagged behind in a number of aspects. [DNE, 1/23/2013]

Also of Interest:
Several governorates witness protests ahead of revolution anniversary | Egypt Independent, Aswat Masriya
Egypt’s private universities form union against new charter | Ahram Online


Iran suggests Cairo for nuclear talks, local agency reports, Ahmadinejad to visit Cairo next month
Iran has suggested that the next round of nuclear talks with world powers should take place in Cairo, the Iranian Students’ News Agency reported on Wednesday, citing the Islamic state’s foreign minister. "When I was in Egypt … it was suggested that the next meeting be held in Cairo," Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi was quoted as saying by ISNA on Wednesday. "This issue was welcomed by our dear friends in Egypt and Egypt will consult with the P5+1 for hosting this meeting." Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will also visit Egypt next month, accepting President Mohamed Morsi’s invitation to take part in the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation summit. [Egypt Independent/Reuters, Ahram Online, AP, EGYNews (Arabic), 1/23/2013]

Back to Africa: Egypt’s Morsi arrives in Addis Ababa Sunday, in Germany on Wednesday
President Mohamed Morsi on Sunday is scheduled to arrive in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, where the African Union is located, to take part in an African Summit. The trip will be Morsi’s second visit to the Ethiopian capital since he was sworn in as Egyptian head of state on 30 June. "This is an important sign of Egypt’s commitment to bolstering its ties with Africa,” said Egyptian ambassador to Ethiopia Mohamed Idris.On Wednesday he will head to Germany for two-days at the invitation of German Chancellor Angela Merkel. [Ahram Online, Shorouk (Arabic), 1/23/2013]

Also of Interest:
Egypt’s Morsi discusses trade with Malaysian PM | Aswat Masriya
Saudi Arabia proclaims support for Egypt | Ahram Online

Photo: Ahram Online

Image: Ultras%20Ahram%20Online.jpg