Tag Archives: Cairo University

What Egypt now needs is a strong leadership

The terrorist scourge must end now and the killers ought to be treated with the full force of law

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A series of well-planned and coordinated bombs ripped through security posts at the entrance to Cairo University on Wednesday afternoon, killing a senior police commander and wounding dozens. The fact that these blasts were so well-coordinated shows that there is no place low or dark enough for terrorists to venture, setting one bomb off to lure in police and those offering assistance, then striking again to purposely injure and maximise terror — and set off another to repeat their dastardly plan.

Over the past three years, Egypt has been rocked by political turmoil and violence that have shaken the nation to its core, but no political philosophy or radical cause is worth the premeditated destruction of any human life. The masterminds behind these blasts are neither political activists nor are they acting to advance a cause: They are criminals who are sadly misguided and mistaken to believe that they can change the course of current events. What Egypt now needs is stability — a strong leadership that can bring the full force of the state to bear on it to deter any terrorist acts and bring such miscreants to justice.

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Egypt’s cabinet passes harsher terrorism laws

The Egyptian government has approved the broadening of terrorism laws, following increased violence in the country.

The bill had been in discussion for months following the spread of militant attacks against Egyptian army and police forces.

Egypt’s State Council revised the law and sent it back to the cabinet earlier on Thursday.

The law is reported to amend terrorism clauses in Egypt’s penal code and stipulate harsher penalties for terrorism-related crimes.

For the new laws to come into force, they still need to be signed by interim President Adly Mansour.

Egypt’s security forces have been the target of frequent attacks since last July.

On Wednesday, a series of explosions killed three people outside Cairo University, including a police brigadier-general.

 

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Breaking news – Series of explosions rock rally at Cairo University, 3 killed

A third blast has gone off near Cairo University, killing at least one. It follows two explosions which killed a police brigadier-general and a civilian during student protest.

At least four other police officers were wounded in the blasts, which went off near a parked police vehicle.

Officials said that the twin bombs went off within seconds of each other. The interior ministry said the bombs were hidden with other officials saying the devices had been concealed in a tree between two security posts.

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The moment of the second explosion has been caught on tape. 

Egyptian state television said that the double explosions happened outside Cairo University’s engineering facility during clashes between security forces and students. It described the devices as crude and homemade.

Egypt’s security forces have been the target of frequent attacks since a military backed coup toppled President Mohamed Morsi last July. Although attacks have mainly been on the restive Sinai Peninsula, they have begun to spread to major urban areas like Cairo.

Morsi’s supporters have staged regular protests against the military appointed government, which the authorities say have killed almost 500 people, most of them police and soldiers.

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Egypt police brigadier-general Tarek El- merjawy killed in Cairo blasts

Brigadier General Tarek El-Mergawy shortly after explosion

Brigadier General Tarek El-Mergawy shortly after explosion

Egyptian police brigadier-general Tarek El-merjawy was killed as two blasts hit outside Cairo University on Wednesday, state television said. Four police officers were wounded in an attack on a police vehicle, Reuters reported, citing security officials

 

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Egypt likely to change roadmap, hold presidential vote first – sources

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CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt’s government is likely to call a presidential election before parliamentary polls, officials said on Monday, rearranging the political timetable in a way that could see army chief General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi elected head of state by April.

Parliamentary elections were supposed to happen first under the roadmap unveiled after the army deposed Islamist President Mohamed Mursi in July after mass protests against his rule.

But critics have campaigned for a change, saying the country needs an elected leader to direct government at a time of economic and political crisis and to forge a political alliance before a potentially divisive parliamentary election.

SISI YET TO DECLARE PRESIDENTIAL BID

A draft constitution concluded on December 1 opened the way for a change in the order of the elections by leaving open the question of which should come first.

Secular-leaning politicians who want the presidential election before the parliamentary polls lobbied interim head of state Adly Mansour during four recent meetings, according to officials familiar with what was discussed.

“The forces that attended the four meetings agreed, with a large percentage, to have the presidential elections first and that means that most likely the presidential elections will be first,” said one of the officials.

An army official added: “Presidential elections are most likely to be held first, as it seems to be the demand of most parties so far.”

Holding the presidential election first would “accelerate the process of bringing Sisi as head of state”, said Mustapha Kamel Al-Sayid, a professor of political science at Cairo University.

“The people who are pushing for a change are doing so because they would like to have him as head of state.”

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Sisi, 59, has yet to announce his candidacy. An army official familiar with his thinking said last week he was still undecided as he weighs up the manifold problems facing a country in deep economic crisis.

But he may have no choice. His supporters see Sisi as the only man able to restore stability after three years of turmoil.

And analysts say the powerful security apparatus will be putting pressure on him to run as it presses a crackdown on the Brotherhood and combats militant attacks that have spiralled since Mursi’s overthrow.

There have been three bombings in the last week, the bloodiest of them an attack on a police station that killed 16 people in the city of Mansoura, north of Cairo. The state blamed the Brotherhood, and the government designated the Brotherhood group a terrorist organisation.

The referendum has been set for January 14-15.

The draft says steps towards holding the first of the elections should be begin no later than 90 days from the ratification of the constitution. Mansour said on Sunday the government was committed to holding both presidential and parliamentary elections within six months of its approval.

The Islamist Nour Party, which came second to the Brotherhood in the last parliamentary elections, had said secular parties wanted to push back the parliamentary election because they were worried about losing to Islamists again.

The Nour, an ultraorthodox Salafi party, supported the removal of Mursi. Sherif Taha, the party spokesman, said the Nour would not object to holding the presidential election first if that was the result of “consensus”.

He also said the government must offer clear guarantees that the parliamentary election would follow.