Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi met with US President Barack Obama for the first time on Thursday, discussing a range of issues including ISIS, Libya, and the detention of journalists in Egypt.



Parliament would be toppled if brotherhood “twisted” way in: Sisi
Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi rejected Thursday calls to postpone parliamentary elections for fear of Muslim Brotherhood “sympathizers” “infiltrating” the upcoming parliament. Egyptians will topple the parliament if Muslim Brotherhood members manage to enter by “twisted means,” Sisi said during a meeting with editors-in-chief of Egyptian newspapers in New York. This parliament will have the power to remove the president, he added, urging candidates of the highest caliber to run for elections. [Aswat Masriya, 9/25/2014]

Also of Interest:
FM: Egypt determined to build a modern democratic state | SIS
Moussa: Sisi’s speech reveals an ambitious plan to rebuild Egypt | EGYNews (Arabic)
June 30 fact finding committee requests information from foreign ministry on Brotherhood members abroad | Akhbar al-Youm


Egypt sentences six men convicted of homosexuality to two years in jail
An Egyptian court on Thursday sentenced six allegedly homosexual men to two years in jail with labor on charges of “committing debauchery,” a judicial source told Ahram Online. The men, also fined EGP200 each (approximately $30), were arrested during a raid on an apartment. According to authorities, two of them were caught “red-handed.” The court said the men, including a Moroccan national, were promoting their apartment as a location for homosexual activity through Facebook, charging $200 a night. [Ahram Online, 9/25/2014]

Also of Interest:
Prosecutor detains four Brotherhood members fifteen days on charges of attacking security forces | Shorouk (Arabic)


Egypt’s natural gas looks for stability
Adding to the host of challenges for a post-Arab Spring Egypt, this week saw regional media reporting a sharp decline in natural gas exports, chipping away at vital revenue for a beleaguered economy in need of positive news. According to press reports, Egyptian gas exports saw a 73.4 percent decline July alone, citing the Information and Decision Support Centre (IDSC). [Forbes, 9/25/2014]

Also of Interest:
Egypt stocks end week on low amid profit-taking | Ahram Online
Egypt awards new gas exploration rights to Italy’s ENI | Ahram Online


Pro-Morsi alliance says Sisi’s speech a “failure”
The National Alliance to Support Legitimacy (NASL) criticized Thursday President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s speech before the UN General Assembly, describing it as a “failure.” It also called on its supporters to rally on Friday under the banner of “justice” to denounce what they called “absence of justice, and abolition of law and the judiciary.” The NASL stated on its Facebook page, “We call on the Egyptian people to pave their way in a revolutionary week, starting on Friday, under the banner of ‘justice’ to reject the absence of justice, law, rights and freedom.” [Aswat Masriya (Arabic), 9/26/2014]

Dar al-Ifta forbids joining Islamist militias
Dar al-Ifta has issued a fatwa against joining armed Islamist groups, whose violent actions “represent an obvious perversion of the teachings of Islam,” the institute announced in an official statement released on Thursday. Anyone joining such an organization is responsible for the crimes the group commits and the blood it spills, and anyone who attempts to help these groups through funding, providing shelter or supporting them in the media is equally sinful, the statement said. [Mada Masr, 9/25/2014]

Also of Interest:
Egyptians spam Erdogan’s Facebook page with ‘Viva Sisi’ comments | Ahram Online
Muslim scholars present religious rebuttal to Islamic State | Reuters


Security arrest suspects in Qena, Sohag on charges of terrorism
Security forces arrested six suspects on Friday in Qena’s Naga Hammadi on charges of terrorism, Egypt’s state-run news agency MENA reported. According to MENA the men are members of the Muslim Brotherhood. Another five men were arrested in Sohag on similar charges. [EGYNews (Arabic), 9/26/2014]

Also of Interest:
Eleven arrested in Minya on charges of inciting violence | Shorouk (Arabic)
Security alert in Beheira in preparation for Brotherhood demonstrations | Shorouk (Arabic)
Security forces shut down squares in Kafr al-Sheikh in anticipation of Brotherhood demonstrations | Shorouk (Arabic)


Sisi and Obama discuss ISIS, Libya crisis, detained journalists
Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi met with US President Barack Obama for the first time on Thursday, discussing a range of issues including ISIS, Libya, and the detention of journalists in Egypt. The two presidents met late on Thursday for more than an hour on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York. Deputy National Security advisor Ben Rhodes told reporters that the talks were “productive” and focused on issues wracking the Middle East, including US operations to take on the Islamic State group and counter-terrorism. Rhodes said that Obama specifically raised “our ongoing concerns about Egypt’s political trajectory. They had a frank exchange on those issues,” Rhodes said. Egypt’s Presidential Spokesman Alaa Youssef said that Obama’s request to meet with Sisi was a positive step. Obama discussed the detention of journalists in Egypt, apparently referring to the jailing of a number of Al Jazeera journalists on terrorism charges, stressing that they should be released. In a separate meeting, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott also raised the case of jailed Australian journalist Peter Greste. Describing the Egyptian president as a “reluctant jailer” Abbott said he was hopeful of a positive outcome. Sisi left New York on Thursday evening to return to Cairo, where political parties have called for a “celebratory welcome” upon his return. [Ahram Online, AFP, 9/26/2014]

Egypt’s Sisi declines to hit back at Erdogan, hints at reconciliation with Qatar
Egyptian president Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi has declined to snap back at Turkey after leader Tayyip Erdogan had questioned his legitimacy in a speech at the UN General Assembly. During a meeting with a local media delegation in New York, Sisi said he would not “reply to those who offend [him],” taking into account his country’s interests. The UAE, however, condemned Erdogan’s comments. During the meeting Sisi also alluded to a possible cooling of hostilities with Qatar. In a CNN interview, Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al Thani, describing the ouster of former President Mohamed Morsi as a coup, said that Qatar has supported Egypt’s successive governments, not just the Muslim Brotherhood. He also said that Qatar welcomes the Muslim Brotherhood as long as it does not take part in politics. [Ahram Online, 9/26/2014]

Also of Interest:
Hamas, Fatah reach partial Gaza deal in Egypt | AP, Reuters, Ahram (Arabic)
Yemen could become “hotbed of tension” threatening neighbors: Sisi | Aswat Masriya
Sisi and Zuma discuss situation in Libya | SIS, Ahram Gate (Arabic)
Shoukry confirms Egypt’s intent to preserve Libya’s unity and territorial integrity | Ahram Gate (Arabic)