Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Gamal Mubarak faints at NDP General Secretariat meeting

According to Ikhwan Web, Gamal Mubarak fainted for five minutes prior to a NDP General Secretariat meeting earlier today. He´s condition is not life threating in any way, he has an acute influenza, due to malnutrition and exhaustion and was ordered two days of complete rest by the doctors.

He is reported to have worked tirelessly lately with preparations for the major constitutional amendments,that passed parliament yesterday and will be presented to the people in a referendum on March 26th.

The Wedding
The report also tells us that he is due to leave for Paris to go furniture hunting, presumably with his wife to be, Khadija. The couple are expected to tie the knot during the summer. Let´s hope for a speedy recovery and a beautiful time in the most romantic city in the world apart from Cairo.

The wedding will be biggest social gathering for years in Egypt, and local and foreign dignitaries alike are expected to attend.

Gamal Mubarak is the undersecretary of the NDP and chairman of the influential policy committee.

UPDATE: This is fellow blogger Ahmad Sherif´s take on Gamal Mubaraks trip to the city of lights. Dosen´t it look a little bit like Loius Farouk, or is it Louis Gamal?

UPDATE II: On the second of April, the independent Egyptian daily Masry al youm carried the long anticipated news for a wedding date. The religious cermony will take place in Cairo on the 28th of April and the wedding party will be in Sharm al Shaikh, The Mubarak family´s home away from Korba. Both the religious cermony and the wedding party will be attended by family and close friends only, and will coincide with the President´s 79th birthday.

Here is a reuters news wire in english(via the Egyptian edition of Daily Star).

UPDATE III: Here is a brand new article from AP journalist Maggie Michael on the political aspects of the upcoming union between the love birds.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Kareem´s four year sentence upheld by the appeals court

An appeals court in Alexandria upheld the four years sentence that Abd al Karim Nabil sulaiman(known as Kareem Amer) recieved on the 22 of February by the Muharam Beq missdaumenours court.

One of Kareem´s defence lawyers, Gamal Eid told the AFP news agency that:

"The verdict was not handed down on the basis of the law. It is a religious verdict similar to those of the inquisition."

This will be updated as more details become available.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Good article on the Egyptian blogosphere

Carolynne Wheeler writes a good article in the Totronto paper Globe & Mail on the Egyptian blogosphere, the point of departure being Kareem, but she tries to go beyond that and shed some light on some of the breaking stories that bloggers first adressed, that got media coverage with the help from the independent papers like Masry al Youm, al fajr and ad Dustour and some satelite channels like Egyptian channel dream and the pan-Arab newsstations al Jazeera and al Arabiyya and not least the American station , broadcasting in arabic al Hurra(much critized, but in this case we really have to give them due credit).

A soundbite from the article:

In Egypt, though, bloggers have also done groundbreaking work revealing police beatings, torture and arrests without cause, by the meticulous documenting of court hearings, first-hand accounts of torture cases and posting of photographs and video of police beatings and physical wounds left on victims, including autopsy pictures and, last year, a video of a bus driver being sodomized in a police station.

"They touch places that no official journalist dares to go," said Wael Abbas, a blogger who last fall broke the story of an anti-Mubarak rally in which numerous women were sexually assaulted by police during mass arrests.

I would like to end with a qoute from fellow blogger, Mohammed Khaled, that seems to echo the determination of Egyptian bloggers to carry on along the path already taken .

"I think it is a message from the government to us, to slow down a little," said Mohammed Khaled, whose blog was among the first to have videos of police torture. "But we've already crossed the line until we can't go back. Nobody is going to slow down from the bloggers."

UPDATE: Reuters reporter Alaá Shahine have a good piece on the same topic here