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Hamas meets with Egyptian leadership

Hamas meets with Egyptian leadership

 

March 31, 2011 (KATAKAMI.COM) — A delegation of Hamas led by Mahmoud Zahar has met with the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, which received power in Egypt following the ouster of former president Hosni Mubarak, as well as several political forces and Egyptian parties and a number of youth behind the Jan. 25 revolution, AL QASSAM WEBSITE reported on Thursday.

They congregated at the headquarters of the Egyptian Wafd party.

Discussions with the Supreme Council focused on bilateral relations, Palestinian reconciliation, the Gaza siege and opening the Rafah crossing on the border between Egypt and the Gaza Strip. They also discussed the Palestinians still being held in Egyptian prisons.

The tour, which began a day earlier as Hamas visited the new Egyptian foreign minister Nabil al-Arabi, was concluded with a visit to the Wafd party president El-Sayyid el-Badawi yesterday afternoon.

Badawi confirmed that the Israeli-Arab conflict has been an Egyptian issue since the beginning of its history.

He added that he has confirmed the right of the Palestinians during meetings with the assistant US secretary of state and US ambassador to Cairo, delegations from the European Union and more.

Zahar confirmed during the discussions that the conflict with Fatah is between those who want resistance against the occupation and those who believe that peace can win back even less than 22 per cent of the land. But Hamas, he said, has agreed to reach its hand out to Fatah to meet the demands of the Arabs. (*)

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Posted by on March 31, 2011 in World News

 

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Egypt's Hosni Mubarak receives $300 pension – paper

Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak

 

 

EGYPT, March 29,2011 (KATAKAMI.COM / RIA NOVOSTI) — Deposed Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak is in receipt of a monthly allowance of $339 from the state, an Egyptian paper said on Tuesday.

Mubarak’s pension as the former commander of the armed forces could not be disclosed, the Al-Masry Al-Youm daily said, citing an unnamed state official.

Mubarak has kept out of the public eye since the popular uprisings last month that forced him to step down and hand power over to the military.

The military authorities have forbidden Mubarak and his family to leave the country. The former leader is believed to be living in his villa in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh. (*)

 
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Posted by on March 29, 2011 in World News

 

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New Egypt PM names most of new Cabinet

An Egyptian man, right, carries a sign that reads in Arabic:"Arab Republic of Egypt, State security investigation device," after protesters stormed the offices of the state security building headquarters in Cairo's northern Nasr City neighborhood, Egypt, Saturday, March 5, 2011. Three weeks after President Hosni Mubarak's ouster, Egyptians are turning their anger toward his internal security apparatus, storming the agency's main headquarters and other offices Saturday and seizing documents to keep them from being destroyed to hide evidence of human rights abuses. (AP Photo/Ahmed Ali)

CAIRO, March 7 (KATAKAMI.COM / AP)  – Egypt’s prime minister-designate named a caretaker Cabinet on Sunday to help lead the country through reforms and toward free elections after the uprising that ousted President Hosni Mubarak, as reported by AP.

The changes include new faces in the key foreign, interior and justice ministries — a decision expected to be met with the approval of the pro-reform groups that led an 18-day uprising that forced Mubarak to step down on Feb. 11.

Meanwhile, a rally outside the Interior Ministry in Cairo, which houses offices of the hated State Security agency, was violently broken up.

Protesters have over the past two days rallied outside some dozen state security offices across the nation. In many cases, protesters stormed the buildings, including the main State Security headquarters in the Cairo suburb of Nasr City. The protests followed reports that agents were burning and shredding documents to destroy evidence that would incriminate them in possible cases of human rights abuses.

On Sunday, army soldiers fired in the air and used stun guns to disperse hundreds of protesters who wanted to storm the State Security offices inside the Interior Ministry in downtown Cairo. The protesters said they wanted to see for themselves whether the building had secret cells and to stop officers from destroying documents.

Thugs armed with rocks, firebombs and machetes also charged at the protesters, but it was not immediately known who had sent them. State TV said 27 arrests were made at the scene.

The State Security agency, which employs about 100,000 of Egypt’s 500,000-strong security forces, is blamed for the worst human rights abuses against Mubarak’s opponents.

Dismantling the agency has been a key demand of the protest groups that led the uprising.

In a move clearly designed to respond to such demands, Prime Minister-designate Essam Sharaf has named a new interior minister. Maj. Gen. Mansour el-Essawy, a former Cairo security chief, was expected to replace Mahmoud Wagdi, who has held the post for less than a month.

The Interior Ministry is in charge of the security forces.

El-Essawy, according to a report by the state news agency, pledged after meeting Sharaf that he would work to restore security and reduce the role of the State Security agency.

Sharaf met with 22 other ministerial nominees, including Nabil Elaraby, expected to be Egypt’s foreign minister. Elaraby will replace Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul-Gheit, who has held the job since 2004 but has been maligned by the protesters because of his criticism of the uprising in its early days.

Elaraby was Egypt’s U.N. representative in the 1990s and served as a judge in the International Court of Justice between 2001 and 2006. He was critical of the government’s crackdown against the uprising and was a member of a committee to advise protest leaders on their reform demands.

The new Cabinet also includes a new justice minister, replacing one who was considered a close Mubarak ally and whose dismissal was demanded by the opposition groups.

The new Cabinet has to be approved and sworn in by Egypt’s military rulers.

Nasser Abdel-Hamid, a protest leader and member of the Youth Coalition, said the new cabinet lineup was acceptable because it did not include Mubarak loyalists.

“Most of them are experts in their field, and have a good history,” he said.   (*)

 
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Posted by on March 7, 2011 in World News

 

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Egypt's new PM vows to meet protesters' demands

This 2006 photo released by Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind., shows newly appointed Egyptian Prime Minister Essam Sharaf when he was on campus to receive the Distinguished Engineering Alumni award. Sharaf was named prime minister on Thursday, March 3, 2011. (AP Photo/Purdue University)

 

CAIRO, March 4, 2011 (KATAKAMI.COM) – Egypt’s new prime minister designate has vowed before thousands of mostly young demonstrators at a central Cairo square that he’ll do everything he can to meet their demands, pleading they turn their attention to “rebuilding” the country, AP reported on Friday.

Essam Sharaf was picked by Egypt’s ruling military on Thursday to replace Ahmed Shafiq as prime minister.

Shafiq was the last premier to be named by Hosni Mubarak, who stepped down Feb. 11 at the end of 18 days of anti-government protests.

A former transport minister, Sharaf endeared himself to the protesters when he joined the demonstrations that forced Mubarak to resign.

He told the crowd at Tahrir Square on Friday that he gains his “legitimacy” from the demonstrators but declined to take an oath of office before them as they demanded.  (*)

 

 
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Posted by on March 4, 2011 in World News

 

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Photostream : Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak meets Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, right, meets with Palestinian authority President Mahmoud Abbas, centre, at the Presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, Jan. 24, 2011. Talks come within the framework of efforts aimed at reviving the Middle East peace process. At left is Senior Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

From right to left, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak meets with Palestinian authority President Mahmoud Abbas, Senior Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat, Egyptian foreign minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit and Abbas spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeineh at the Presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, Jan. 24, 2011. Talks come within the framework of efforts aimed at reviving the Middle East peace process. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak (R) talks with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas (C) and Palestinian Chief Negotiator, Saeb Erekat, during their meeting at the presidential palace in Cairo, January 24, 2011. Palestinian negotiators secretly told Israel it could keep swathes of occupied East Jerusalem, according to leaked documents that show Palestinians offering much bigger peace concessions than previously revealed. The documents, obtained by the Al Jazeera television channel, could undermine Abbas's position, whose public declarations about Jerusalem are at odds with what his officials were promising in private. REUTERS/Asmaa Waguih

Palestinian authority President Mahmoud Abbas, right, listens to Senior Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat during a press conference following his meeting with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, not pictured, at the Presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, Jan. 24, 2011. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

 
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Posted by on January 24, 2011 in World News

 

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US worried by rising anti-Christian attacks

Egyptian writers and intellectuals hold a candle-light protest in central Cairo on January 3, 2011 to condemn the New Year's Eve car bomb attack on a Coptic church in the northern Egyptian city of Alexandria in which 21 people were killed. AFP PHOTO/KHALED DESOUKI

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WASHINGTON, Jan 5 (KATAKAMI / THE STRAITS TIMES)  — THE Obama administration says it is ‘deeply concerned’ by what appears to be a rising number of attacks on Christians in the Middle East and Africa.

The State Department said on Tuesday that the US condemns religiously motivated violence and is disturbed by a recent string of attacks against Christians in Iraq, Egypt and Nigeria.

Spokesman PJ Crowley called for the governments in those countries to bring the perpetrators to justice.

A radical Muslim sect in Nigeria has claimed numerous recent attacks on Christian churches. In Alexandria, Egypt, on Saturday, a suicide bomber killed 21 Coptic Christians outside a church.

Iraq’s tiny Christian community has been hit hard by recent attacks, including a late October church siege in Baghdad that left 68 people dead. — AP

 
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Posted by on January 5, 2011 in World News

 

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Egypt : 'Church bomber sought more carnage'

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January 05, 2011 (KATAKAMI / PRESSTV.IR) — The bomber who attacked a Coptic church in the Egyptian city of Alexandria probably intended to detonate his bomb inside the building to kill as many people as possible, the police say.

Egyptian investigators issued a report on Monday saying police guards had prevented the attacker, who set off his explosives outside the church on New Year’s Eve, from entering the house of worship, AFP reported.

The most helpful clue the police have found at the scene is an amputated head, which is believed to belong to the attacker. They hope to identify the bomber if surgeons succeed in reconstructing the head’s features.

The attack spawned three days of protests by Christians involving clashes with security forces. The protesters have blamed the government for not doing enough to provide security for the minority, which accounts for 10 percent of the country’s 80 million people.

Reports say more threats have been issued against Coptic churches in Egypt and Europe on several websites.

Police in France, Germany, Australia, and Britain say they are boosting security measures to address any possible threat.

No group has claimed responsibility for the bombing, which killed 21 people and injured over 80 others.

On Saturday, President Hosni Mubarak blamed “foreign hands” for the deadly attack and promised to stand up to terrorists. He also urged Muslims and Christians to maintain solidarity.

Egyptian police say they have detained 17 people in connection with the attack.

Earlier, Pope Benedict XVI called on the leaders of nations to protect Christians.

However, the Pope’s remarks were severely criticized by Egypt’s top Muslim cleric, Ahmed al-Tayeb, as “unacceptable interference in Egypt’s internal affairs.” (*)

 
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Posted by on January 5, 2011 in World News

 

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