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CI Capital raises Egypt’s Oriental Weavers

By Reuters CAIRO: Egypt’s Oriental Weavers, the world’s biggest machine-woven carpet maker, may report earnings growth of 33 percent in 2012 helped by easing raw material prices and increased demand, CI Capital said and upgraded the stock to “buy”. The company’s profitability was hurt over the last year due to increased raw material costs, political …

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Suez Canal rises 3.5 pct in year to March

By Reuters CAIRO: Monthly revenue from Egypt’s Suez Canal rose 3.5 percent in the year to March to $428 million, the Egypt Information Portal website showed on Monday. The canal’s revenue in March 2011 was $413.5 million. Revenue rose 12.2 percent month-on-month from $381.4 million in February 2012. The waterway is a vital source of …

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Egypt stocks drop to 8-week lows on funding fears

By Tom Pfeiffer and Patrick Werr / Reuters CAIRO: Egyptian stocks fell to eight-week lows on Monday after the Muslim Brotherhood challenged the government to change the terms of an emergency IMF loan, showing political powers remain far apart on how to stave off a payments crisis. Muslim Brotherhood presidential candidate Khairat El-Shater said he had …

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Egypt’s Islamist candidate says IMF deal unlikely

By Patrick Werr and Marwa Awad / Reuters CAIRO: Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood has warned the government it will not support an IMF loan unless the terms are changed or it moves aside and allows a new administration to oversee how the funds are spent, its candidate for president said on Sunday. The government has been negotiating …

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Network aims to empower MENA female entrepreneurs

By Reem Abdellatif CAIRO: Women are playing an increasingly imperative role as pioneers of economic prosperity and growth in the Arab world. With this in mind, the Middle East and North Africa Businesswomen’s Network (MENA BWN) will launch its inaugural forum this week in Dubai, focusing on the kind of problems females face when initiating their …

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Mubarak aide presidency bid an ‘insult’: Islamist rival

By Marwa Awad and AbdelRahman Youssef / Reuters CAIRO: A bid for power by Hosni Mubarak’s former intelligence chief is an insult to Egypt’s revolution that, if successful, would trigger a second nationwide revolt, the Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate for Egypt’s presidency said. In his first public comments since being nominated by the Brotherhood on March …

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Suleiman says not backed by army, alleges Brotherhood behind death threats

By Reuters CAIRO: Hosni Mubarak’s former intelligence chief said his bid for the presidency does not have the support of Egypt’s military rulers and accused Islamists of sending him death threats, an Egyptian newspaper reported on Monday. Omar Suleiman, 74, announced his candidacy on Friday and showed he still wields political clout by collecting around …

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Military backs Mubarak’s VP for president

By Hamza Hendawi / AP CAIRO: Hosni Mubarak’s former vice president and spy chief Omar Suleiman will have the behind-the-scenes backing of Egypt’s ruling generals and the state media’s powerful propaganda machine in his bid to succeed his longtime mentor for the nation’s highest office, according to officials with firsthand knowledge. Suleiman, 75, will set …

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Israeli lawmaker backs Suleiman as Egypt leader

By AP JERUSALEM: An Israeli lawmaker with close ties to the ousted Egyptian regime says former spy chief Omar Suleiman would be the best president for Egypt in terms of Israeli interests. Legislator Binyamin Ben-Eliezer says a Muslim Brotherhood leader would threaten Israel’s 1979 peace deal with Egypt. Ben-Eliezer told Army Radio on Monday that …

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New blast hits Sinai gas pipeline: officials

By AFP CAIRO: An explosion on Monday hit a pipeline which supplies Egyptian gas to Israel and Jordan, marking the 14th such attack since 2011, security officials said. According to witnesses, masked gunmen in two cars dug a hole near the pipeline in the Al-Midan area close to the north Sinai town of Al-Arish, placed …

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Egypt lawmaker presents political exclusion draft law

By Mai Shams El-Din CAIRO: Lawmaker Essam Sultan said Sunday he presented a political exclusion draft law, barring officials of the former regime from practicing politics, as former intelligence chief Omar Suleiman registered his candidacy for the presidential race. The final list of candidates will be announced on April 26, leaving almost no time for parliament …

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Islamists, remnants of ex-regime make last-minute presidential bid

By Heba Fahmy CAIRO: Islamists and remnants of the former regime (commonly known as felool) rushed to register their candidacy for Egypt’s first post-Mubarak presidential election. Registration for the presidential election began April 8 and closed Sunday at 2 pm as frontrunners faced with uncertainties regarding their applications due to legal challenges. The committee supervising …

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Tug of war over Constituent Assembly escalates

By Heba Hesham CAIRO: Head of the Journalists’ Syndicate, Mamdouh El-Wali said Saturday that the syndicate adheres to its decision to withdraw from the Constituent Assembly, describing the withdrawal as a national duty. According to the official Middle East News Agency (MENA), the syndicate will only back-peddle on its decision if Al-Azhar and the Church and …

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Court revokes decision to expel GUC students

By Mai Shams El-Din CAIRO: The Administrative Court revoked on Sunday a decision by the administration of the German University in Cairo to suspend four students for two weeks for their participation in a protest on campus. “Two of the four students were expelled and two were suspended for two weeks. While we filed the lawsuit, …

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People’s Assembly slams government report

By Heba Hesham CAIRO: Egypt’s lawmakers slammed the government’s first annual report to parliament, which was presented by Prime Minister Kamal El-Ganzoury on Feb. 26. Parliament convened Sunday to resume discussion of a PA committee report on the Cabinet’s statement, devoting five sessions to the subject, which many see as a step towards a no-confidence …

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Slow French sculptures head to hectic Hong Kong

By Anna Maria Jakubek / AFP Time and how it shapes us is key to the work of French sculptress Nathalie Decoster, including the giant bronzes she has just shipped off to Hong Kong — quiet meditations for a hectic-paced city. Forty monumental human figures of bronze and steel, from two to six meters high (six …

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Hesham Al-Gakh’s Tahrir Square poetry honored in Istanbul

By Istanbul Arts News The poetry of Egyptian revolutionary poet Hesham Al-Gakh amazed audiences at a major gathering of international poets assembled in Istanbul this week for a one-night celebration of the world’s oldest love poem, which is currently in Istanbul’s archaeological museum. An English translation of Al-Gakh’s poem, “An Honest View of Liberation Square” from …

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Ant Hampton’s Autoteatro turns audience into performers

By Chitra Kalyani Assigned roles, seemingly at random, your group of five is attached via headphones to a device. In the minutes that follow, you produce a psychiatrist, an amalgam of Freud and Frankenstein, and one of you has to save the others from madness. So goes “GuruGuru,” an experimental work by Ant Hampton, or …

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Tahrir tumbles and tumbrels

By Philip Whitfield CAIRO: It appears the Salafi Sheikh Hazem Abu Ismail’s mother did obtain American nationality on October 25, 2006 putting paid to his presidential bid. Doesn’t the Egyptian Administrative Court’s ruling on Saturday doom the Muslim Brotherhood’s Khairat Al-Shater too? The judges overturned Field Marshal Tantawi’s restoration of Ayman Nour’s full political rights. Al-Shater …

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Iran’s nuclear grass eaters

By Shlomo Ben Ami MADRID: After long years of failed international efforts to end Iran’s cunning drive to develop nuclear weapons, the question today is no longer whether the West can prevent the nuclearization of Iran’s military arsenal, but whether the Islamic regime collapses first. Unfortunately, if it does not, the only option for stopping Iran …

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Murder Unincorporated

By Ian Buruma NEW YORK: What possessed the young French Muslim Mohammed Merah to murder three Jewish schoolchildren, a rabbi, and three soldiers, two of them fellow Muslims? What possessed another man, Anders Breivik, to gun down more than 60 teenagers in a Norwegian summer camp last year? These murder sprees are so unusual that people …

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Middle Eastern Americans transcend politics with humour

By Sadia Ashraf LOS ANGELES, California: A motley crew of diverse Arab, Persian and American comedians is making audiences laugh and unraveling stereotypes at the same time. With their own comedy brand, sold-out worldwide tours, documentaries and frequent appearances as commentators on major news outlets, Aron Kader, Maz Jobrani, Maysoon Zayid and Dean Obeidallah have built …

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Angry soccer fans shake Egypt’s fragile peace

By Tom Pfeiffer and Osama Khairy / Reuters CAIRO: Lingering enmity between Egyptian soccer fans and police since the country’s deadliest stadium disaster could shatter a fragile calm on the streets as the army prepares to hand power to civilians. Many soccer supporters are convinced a post-match stampede that left 74 people dead in Port Said …

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Arab Spring Islamists launch US charm offensive

By Edouard Guihaire / AFP WASHINGTON: With a White House meeting, talks at a think-tank, and interviews with newspapers, Islamists unshackled by the Arab Spring are launching a new charm offensive to reassure a nervous Washington. The rise to power of elected Islamists in Tunisia, Egypt and elsewhere has alarmed many Americans, who fear the …

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Pope, in Easter message, backs Syria peace plan

By Philip Pullella / Reuters VATICAN CITY: A fatigued-looking Pope Benedict threw his weight behind a United Nations plan to end bloodshed in Syria in his Easter Sunday message, calling for “an immediate commitment” to peace efforts there. The 84-year-old pope gave a shorter-than-usual blessing from the central balcony of St Peter’s Basilica after an outdoor …

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Abu Dhabi sells stake in electric carmaker Tesla

By Dinesh Nair / Reuters DUBAI: Abu Dhabi National Energy (TAQA), a state-owned oil explorer and power supplier, has sold its 7 percent stake in Tesla Motors Inc, cashing out from the US electric carmaker’s steady stock rally. TAQA, which is 75-percent owned by the government of Abu Dhabi, said it made a profit of $113 …

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SunCity Mall opens in Egypt at a price tag of LE 3 bln

By Reem Abdellatif CAIRO: SunCity, a new addition to Egypt’s shopping and entertainment centers worth more than LE 3 billion (about $497 million) in total investments, officially opened last week. This is the first retail flagship for HNS Group, an international contractor and real estate developer. Located directly on the Ring Road, one of Egypt’s most …

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IFC helps educator build schools across Egypt

CAIRO: IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is lending the Cairo Investment and Real Estate Development company (CIRA) up to $15 million to help the firm build primary and secondary schools across Egypt, according to a statement. The funding support from IFC will enable CIRA, a provider of kindergarten through grade 12 instruction, …

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Emirates ups Egypt services to 13 weekly flights

CAIRO: UAE-based Emirates Airline said it will “fully restore its services to Egypt by boosting its frequencies to 13 per week,” to cater to growing passenger and cargo demand. In a statement, Saeed Khalifa bin Sulaiman, Emirates manager in Egypt, said, “There is significant demand for travel in and out of Egypt from across our …

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Pakistan row nears end, UAE Etisalat may have to pay out

By Matt Smith / Reuters DUBAI: Pakistan Telecommunication (PTCL) should soon receive assets due to it as part of its partial privatization, its chief executive said, a development that could trigger an $800 million payment from shareholder Etisalat to the government. Etisalat, the no.1 telecoms operator in the United Arab Emirates, led a consortium that bought …

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